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Everton name Lampard manager as club seeks to arrest decline

Tony McArdle - Everton FC / Everton FC / Getty

Everton unveiled Frank Lampard as their new manager on Monday after he reportedly outshone Vitor Pereira and Duncan Ferguson during the club's interview process.

The former Derby County and Chelsea boss will oversee the first match of his Toffees reign on Saturday when Brentford visit Merseyside for an FA Cup fixture. The first Premier League match of his tenure will be at Newcastle United three days later.

"It is a huge honour for me to represent and manage a club the size and tradition of Everton Football Club," Lampard said. "I'm very hungry to get started. After speaking to the owner, Chairman and the Board, I very much felt their passion and ambition. I hope they felt my ambition and how hard I want to work to bring it together."

Pereira, who led FC Porto to Portuguese league titles in 2012 and 2013, was previously a surprise favorite to succeed Rafa Benitez as Everton manager. However, some fans made it clear they preferred Lampard over Pereira during protests outside the club's ground last Wednesday.

The demonstrations resulted in a piece of graffiti on the walls of Goodison Park demanding "Pereira out, Lampard in" despite neither candidate officially being offered the job at the time.

Ferguson, the club icon who was overseeing Everton in a caretaker capacity, missed out on the role despite featuring in the final round of interviews.

Former Everton star and current Derby boss Wayne Rooney said on Friday that he refused to interview for the vacancy at his former club.

Everton's initial interest in Roberto Martinez broke down after the Royal Belgian Football Association blocked talks between its national team head coach and the Premier League club.

Lampard, 43, must turn around the fortunes of a club that's slid to 16th in the Premier League standings after a dreadful run of six points from 14 matches, leaving it four points above the relegation zone. Everton's predicament comes despite an exorbitant transfer spend of around £560 million since owner Farhad Moshiri's involvement with the club began in 2016.

Lampard started his managerial career with Derby - where he lost the Championship playoff final to Aston Villa in his first and only season at the helm - before he took over at Chelsea.

The Blues' all-time top scorer led them to fourth in the Premier League and the FA Cup final in his first campaign in charge despite a transfer ban preventing any moves during the summer he took the job. However, Chelsea dismissed Lampard in January 2021 when the team was ninth in England's top flight following a summer spending spree that exceeded £200 million.

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