Salary package, James Rodriguez twist and transfer talks – Meet inside Rafa Benitez and first day at Everton – .

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Salary package, James Rodriguez twist and transfer talks – Meet inside Rafa Benitez and first day at Everton – .


Everton believe Rafa Benitez has a point to prove.
And, after a long and seemingly exhaustive search, this is just one of the many reasons why Farhad Moshiri decided the Spaniard was the ‘right man’ to take on Goodison.

Moshiri is adamant. Benitez is the best coach available for Everton, who had no plans to seek a manager, in a difficult market for managers.

Despite the challenges, controversy and backlash, policymakers are excited about the nomination and believe the club have replaced Carlo Ancelotti with another elite coach to usher in a new era at the club.

There is palpable excitement, at the top of the club, about the arrival of Benitez and a top six is ​​the goal this season.

The 61-year-old came with recommendations from high-ranking friends – the club said they spoke to “a lot of people” in the game – and Moshiri’s belief that Benitez was the right man for Everton, despite the obvious anger of parts of the fan. -base towards the appointment of the ex-boss of Liverpool, was strengthened by the support of Alisher Usmanov.

Indeed, it has been claimed, Usmanov called his close friend Roman Abramovich to ask questions about Benitez, after the Spaniard spent six successful, but turbulent, months at Stamford Bridge in the 2012-13 season. , winning the Europa League and qualifying for the Champions League, having replaced Roberto Di Matteo to the fury of the fans.

Moshiri was well aware of the displeasure of Blues fans – he is a fan himself – but is sufficiently convinced that Benitez can succeed and believes that in the end his decision will be justified, despite the extent of the backlash.

His unusual decision to speak at length on the case at a club Q&A on Wednesday spoke volumes – he felt compelled to explain his thinking in more detail than he would. habitually.

The club’s majority shareholder, who has held at least one face-to-face meeting with the manager in Italy, also named Benitez despite deep reservations from some in the boardroom.

Benitez, the fifth new permanent manager of Everton in as many years, is said to earn around £ 6-7million per season over a three-year contract and has discussed the possibility of adding trusted lieutenants Paco from Miguel and Antonio Gomez to his backroom staff, it is believed.

Duncan Ferguson and Alan Kelly will remain at the club and be part of the new-look squad under Benitez, with Everton saying further appointments will be made in due course.

Benitez spent most of Wednesday at Finch Farm in meetings, ensuring internal media engagements and visiting every department – including the recruiting team – with Sarvar Ismailov, the club’s female sporting and business director, having traveled from London in the morning to help show him in the gardens of Finch Farm.

The new boss also spoke to academy director and Under-23 manager David Unsworth and professional development coach and former Everton full-back Leighton Baines.

Director of football Marcel Brands was not at the Halewood training complex yesterday. Instead, he was in quarantine at home following a recent “business trip” to Holland.

Benitez has spoken to Brands about the transfers – “I have the plan,” the new manager said – and although Dutch right-back Denzel Dumfries has been mentioned in conversations, it is not yet clear where the defender stands. PSV on the club’s shortlist. right backs.

The director of football made a statement early Wednesday evening having been conspicuously absent in the club’s initial statement, which was released shortly after 3 p.m.

Brands, who recently signed a new three-year contract, said Benitez could ‘trust him’, that he would always be ‘honest’ and that the new manager could ‘count’ on him. Benitez said: “We will work together”.

Benitez has been assured he will have the full backing of Moshiri and the powers that be in the market this summer, but it remains to be seen what Everton has to spend, given concerns about the rules of financial fair play, in especially before unloading unwanted players first. .

The new boss is well aware of the need to inject rhythm and energy into the squad and as well as the right-back and away, Benitez could yet ask the club to consider their options as well. central midfielder.

The future of Moise Kean, who is set to move to Paris Saint Germain, is one of his first issues to be resolved with Brands.

James Rodriguez’s future at Everton is not yet finalized, but there are serious doubts about the Colombian’s stay at Goodison now that Benitez’s nomination has been settled.

The 29-year-old is believed to be on offer to European clubs including AC Milan as his representatives brace for the distinct possibility of the playmaker being told he is no longer on the plans.

Under Ancelotti, James was central, but at Real Madrid he and Benitez had a very different relationship.

The initial feedback was that Ancelotti’s abrupt departure to the Bernabeu didn’t mean Rodriguez would definitely follow him out of the gate, but rather wait and see who his replacement would be before making a decision.

Benitez became the favorite to replace Ancelotti in mid-June.

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Newly released Wolves Nuno Espirito Santo was in pole position and should be offered the job at some point, but Blues sources have insisted to ECHO that despite the Portuguese coach being a ‘candidate strong “, the club was still talking to other prospects. – including Benitez.

And so, the more than 40 manager names, sent to Brands within 24 hours of Ancelotti’s shock release, have now been reduced to a shortlist of five, with Benitez sitting at the top of the pile.

Initial skepticism about the extent of Everton’s interest had subsided and the former Valencia coach knew Moshiri was serious about his fifth management appointment.

It would take just under 29 days to complete Ancelotti’s replacement process – a “robust and wide-ranging recruiting process,” the club said yesterday – and include discussions and interviews with a variety of candidates.

Roberto Martinez had supporters in Everton’s boardroom, but his Premier League record, described as ‘mixed’, raised concerns.

Sources say there was also a question of how he could transition from national team coach with Belgium to club football, with so little time to plan.

Espirito Santo, who headed to Spurs, believed he was going to be offered the job after talks with the club and appeared to be the favorite.

But Everton, despite their eagerness to speak to him and their admiration for his coaching abilities, got cold feet after meeting face-to-face.




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The suggestion is that, from the Blues’ point of view, the interview did not go as smoothly as expected.

ECHO was also informed that although Espirito Santo was considered a “top trainer”, his CV was missing a piece of top level silverware, which counted against him.

This is where Benitez started to take the lead. But Moshiri was not only won over by his track record and experience, but also “he impressed us in the interview process with his passion, ambition and vision”.

Graham Potter was one of the first names on Moshiri’s lips as he began to envision life without Ancelotti and the Brighton boss is highly regarded at Everton and there is admiration for what he does at the Amex.

But Moshiri, as he has since confirmed, always felt inclined to go for a more experienced boss.

Potter, 46, only succeeded in the Premier League for two seasons and the other issue for Everton’s power brokers was that he remains tied to a long-term deal on the South Coast which would have complicated things.

Benitez, of course, comes to the club as a free agent after leaving China where he was manager of Dalian Professional.

David Moyes was seen, for a time, as an ideal candidate for a return to Goodison, but the 58-year-old refused to leave West Ham United in order to facilitate any return.

Rafa Benitez coach of Everton

With a new contract on the horizon and European football on the horizon for next season, it was always going to take a clear demonstration of the Blues’ intention for Moyes to consider moving away from London Stadium, which did not. never been the case.

Moyes signing a new three-year contract with the Hammers ended any lingering possibility of his return.

And so the talks, lasting about two weeks, continued with Benitez and although the strength of fan sentiment intensified – culminating with a shameful banner left near the Spaniard’s home in Wirral which was unanimously condemned by Blues supporters – Moshiri continued with her nomination.

He is keenly aware of the sentiment among the fans but is confident that Benitez may be successful in changing the sentiment during the date.

Goodison officials were very pleased with the way Benitez’s first day at Finch Farm went and felt the right fit was in place after a difficult and controversial search for Ancelotti’s replacement.

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