Former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez “has been talked about” as a replacement for Roberto Martinez as Everton manager, according to a report.
The Mail claim the Newcastle boss is “one of the names being considered” by the Everton board as they contemplate replacing under-fire Roberto Martinez.
They do however state that no contact has been made with the 56-year-old, who does have a break clause in his three-year Newcastle contract which can be activated by either the Spaniard or the Magpies in the event of relegation.
Martinez is under intense scrutiny at Goodison Park and some fans stayed behind for 90 minutes after the final whistle of Saturday’s win over Bournemouth to voice their disapproval of Martinez.
The former Wigan boss, in his third full season at the helm, looks like steering Everton to a finish of no higher than 11th this time around and with the likes of John Stones and Romelu Lukaku at his disposal there is a feeling of underachievement.
Everton, now under the ownership of new majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri, are “almost certain to change their manager”, according to the tabloid and if Benitez fails to avoid relegation with Newcastle then he is expected to leave Tyneside.
Benitez though has not said he will leave the North-East if the Geordies are relegated and he is hardly likely to be a popular appointment at Goodison having managed Everton’s Merseyside rivals Liverpool for six years, leading the Reds to the 2005 Champions League trophy and once describing the Blues as a “small club”.
“When you play against the smaller teams at Anfield you know the game will be narrow and compact and at times we were a little bit nervous,” Benitez said after a goalless Merseyside derby in 2007.
Former Everton boss David Moyes and outgoing Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini are also believed to on the club’s short-list.