The Everton fans are feeling rather subdued in the Transfer Tavern due to both their side’s mediocre campaign so far, and the style of football that Sam Allardyce is attempting to install at the club.
On paper, Allardyce’s short reign at the helm of Everton Football Club appears to be a successful stint so far. The former England boss was tasked with improving results and leading The Toffees away from the relegation zone when he took charge at the end of November, and so far he has more or less achieved that objective. With ten fixtures left to play Everton need just 6 more points to reach the safe-haven of the 40-point mark, but yet the supporters are struggling to be delighted by the situation of their club.
Under Allardyce’s leadership, you are guaranteed one thing, namely Premier League survival, but Everton are a club who should be striving for so much more than merely to survive the challenge of a league which they have graced with their presence since it was established in 1992.
As the season gradually draws towards its conclusion, it’s starting to feel like Allardyce has served his short-term purpose, and should be sent on his way next summer so the club can focus on the long-term strategy and appoint a manager who can enable the club to break into the top-six once again.
Everton have not finished inside the top-six since Roberto Martinez carried took them to a 5th place finish in the 2013/14 season after collecting a whopping 72 points – the highest return in the clubs Premier League history, and it seems unlikely that Allardyce is the right man to help the club to reach the dizzy heights achieved by Martinez.
With that being said, the Everton hierarchy should be turning their attention towards personnel who could potentially succeed Allardyce at Goodison Park this summer, and one man they would be wise to add to their shortlist is Mikel Arteta.
The former Evertonian made 206 appearances for the club during a 6-year stint, and since his retirement, he has begun to learn the ropes of coaching and management alongside Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. For any aspiring manager, working alongside Guardiola undoubtedly represents the richest of footballing educations at this moment in time, so Arteta is certainly well placed to develop his managerial expertise.
Although it would be a huge risk to take on the 35-year-old before he has gained first-hand experience of working as a manager, his affiliation with the club combined with his education at Man City mean it would be a gamble worth taking for Everton. His philosophy would place emphasis on attractive, possession-based football, something which the supporters are bound to appreciate given the level of talent at the club, so Everton would be foolish not to consider the possibility of replacing Allardyce with Arteta next summer.
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