Everton manager search: Roberto Martinez high on club’s shortlist and would welcome return


Roberto Martinez would welcome a return to Everton as they search for a replacement for Rafael Benitez, who was sacked as the club’s manager on Sunday.

Martinez, who spent three years at Goodison Park between 2013 and 2016, is high on Everton’s shortlist.

However, the Belgian FA wants Martinez to stay on as manager and lead them into the 2022 World Cup, and any return to the Premier League side would be unlikely to happen before this winter’s tournament.

Martinez was the Everton board’s No 1 choice to replace Carlo Ancelotti – who moved to Real Madrid – this summer, but Farhad Moshiri, the club’s owner, opted for Benitez.

The 48-year-old is understood to feel a huge affinity to Everton following his time at the club. He led them to fifth in his first season but was sacked in May 2016 after two successive 11th-place finishes.

Benitez left Everton after just six-and-a-half months in charge following Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Norwich.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Norwich City’s win over Everton

The Toffees have won just once in the Premier League since September and are 16th in the table, six points above the relegation zone.

As well as Martinez, Wayne Rooney is being considered as a candidate to replace Benitez. The former England captain has impressed in his first managerial job at Derby under extremely difficult circumstances.

Rooney came through Everton’s academy and made his debut in August 2002 before joining Manchester United two years later. He also spent the 2017/18 season at Goodison Park after returning from Old Trafford.

More to follow…

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