Everton sack Silva after dropping into bottom three

Marco Silva’s last match in charge of Everton was a 5-2 thrashing by Liverpool. (Getty Images)
Updated 05 December 2019

Everton sack Silva after dropping into bottom three

  • David Moyes has been linked with a return to Goodison as Silva’s successor as a stop-gap until the end of the season
  • A run of eight defeats in 11 games sealed Silva’s fate after the club assembled a squad that was expected to challenge for European qualification

LONDON: Everton sacked manager Marco Silva after 18 months in charge at Goodison Park on Thursday after a 5-2 thrashing by Liverpool saw the club fall into the Premier League relegation zone.
“Everton Football Club can confirm that manager Marco Silva has left the Club,” Everton said in a statement.
“Duncan Ferguson has taken temporary charge of the first team and will manage the side for the game against Chelsea on Saturday.”
David Moyes has been linked with a return to Goodison as Silva’s successor as a stop-gap until the end of the season.
A run of eight defeats in 11 games sealed Silva’s fate after the club assembled a squad that was expected to challenge for European qualification at the other end of the table.
Everton fans called for the Portuguese to go after a 2-0 home defeat to Norwich on November 23.
He was handed a reprieve and an improved performance despite conceding a late winner to Leicester in a 2-1 defeat last weekend saw him limp into the Merseyside derby.
However, that was the final straw as the Blues conceded five times to Liverpool for the first time since 1982.
Silva becomes the fourth Premier League manager to be sacked in little over two weeks after Tottenham, Arsenal and Watford also fired Mauricio Pochettino, Unai Emery and Quique Sanchez Flores respectively.
The former Hull and Watford boss becomes the fourth managerial casualty since Farhad Moshiri took charge of Everton in 2016 after Roberto Martinez, Ronald Koeman and Sam Allardyce.
Silva was heavily backed in the transfer market with over £100 million ($130 million) spent on the likes Richarlison, Lucas Digne, Andre Gomes, Yeray Mina, Moise Kean and Alex Iwobi over the past two summers.
An eighth place finish last season was seen as scant return on that investment and things went from bad to worse this season until Moshiri felt the need to bite the bullet once more.


Man City’s court triumph set to intensify race for top 4 places in Premier League

Updated 14 July 2020

Man City’s court triumph set to intensify race for top 4 places in Premier League

  • The fight for a top-five finish has reverted back to needing to be in the top four to join champion Liverpool and City, already secured in second place

LONDON: Manchester City’s success in overturning its Champions League ban on Monday has huge ramifications on the Premier League and the remaining two teams that will qualify for Europe’s top club competition.

Chelsea, Manchester United and Leicester — and maybe Wolverhampton Wanderers and Sheffield United, too — are now fighting for two qualifying spots instead of three with two weeks of the season remaining.

The fight for a top-five finish has reverted back to needing to be in the top four to join champion Liverpool and City, already secured in second place, in earning tens of millions of dollars in UEFA prize money next season.

The most concerned team is likely to be Leicester.

In the top four since September — and, in December, even looking like the most realistic title challenger to Liverpool — Leicester have imploded, collecting only two wins from their last 11 league games stretching back to the end of January.

After losing to relegation-threatened Bournemouth 4-1 on Sunday, Leicester will find themselves  in fifth place if Man United beat  Southampton on Monday.

United appears much more likely to secure a top-four finish and return to the Champions League after a season’s absence.

With four straight wins ahead of the Southampton game, United are the form team in the league and also has the most benign remaining schedule with upcoming matches against Crystal Palace and West Ham before what could be a winner-takes-all game game at Leicester on the final weekend of the season.

Making it all the more intriguing is the fact that another final-day match is between Chelsea and Wolves.

Chelsea is currently in third place, one point ahead of Leicester, but will drop into fourth if United beat  Southampton.

A victory over already-relegated Norwich on Tuesday appears pivotal for Chelsea, considering its last two games are at Liverpool — a team chasing records to cap its title-winning season — and then Wolves, who have gained a reputation for beating the top teams over the last two years.

Wolves are in sixth place, four points off the top four, so the ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport has come as a blow to their Champions League ambitions.

Indeed, Wolves’ best chance of qualifying for the competition is now to win the Europa League, which earns entry to the Champions League. The team coached by Nuno Espirito Santo has reached the last 16 of the Europa League and will play the second leg of its match against Olympiakos next month, with the score at 1-1 after the first leg.

Likewise, seventh-place Sheffield United needed City to lose its appeal at sport’s highest court to stand a realistic chance of a finish in the Champions League positions, a prospect that would have seemed fanciful for a team that was widely tipped for relegation at the start of the season.

Europa League qualification will be Sheffield United’s target now, with seventh place possibly earning that reward if Manchester City, Manchester United or Chelsea win the FA Cup.