Everton interview unemployed manager as search for Benitez successor heats up

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Premier League side Everton sacked Rafa Benitez earlier this month following an abysmal run of results.

Now understood to be on the lookout for a new long-term boss, the Toffees, who have installed Duncan Ferguson as the side’s temporary gaffer, have interviewed Vitor Pereira, according to the Daily Mail.

Pereira, 53, is currently without a club but does have a very decent CV.

The 53-year-old’s most notable achievements came when he was with Porto for two years from 2011 to 2013 and guided the side to as many Primeira Liga titles.

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After leaving Portugal and moving abroad to manage in Greece, Germany and China, Pereira’s latest assignment came last year when he agreed to become Turkish side Fenerbache’s new boss.

Former Fenerbahce manager Vitor Pereira is a candidate to succeed Rafa Benitez at Everton.

However, after being relieved of his duties just before Christmas, the Portuguese tactician is now out of work but could be set for a sensational return to management.

Understood to be wanted by Everton, who are keen to move away from their ‘Premier League proven’ policy, Pereira has been interviewed by the club and is thought to be impressed following initial talks.

Should Everton opt to appoint Pereira, it will signal the end to a rather problematic period that saw the club risk of hiring former rival, Benitez.

Speaking about his recent departure, the former Liverpool boss, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo, said: “We knew it wouldn’t be easy, and that it was a big challenge, both emotionally and in terms of sport.

“My love for this city, for Merseyside and its people, made me accept this challenge, but it is only when you are inside that you realise the magnitude of the task.

“From the very first day, my staff and myself worked as we always do, with commitment and full dedication, we didn’t only have to get results, but we also had to win over people’s hearts.

“However, the financial situation and then the injuries that followed made things even harder. I am convinced that we would have been better once the injured players were back and with the arrival of the new signings.

“The road to success isn’t easy and sadly, nowadays in football there is a search for immediate results and there is always less and less patience; unfortunately circumstances have determined the results and it won’t be possible to continue this project.

“In any case, thank you to the Board, to the staff, to the players, and to those fans who have supported us during this time.

“My best wishes for EFC.

“Rafa Benítez.”

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