Sam Allardyce was on Wednesday sacked as manager of Premier League side Everton after just six months and despite guiding them away from trouble to an eighth-place finish, the club announced.
The 63-year-old had come under fire from fans over the route one style of play and former England and Manchester United star Wayne Rooney was rumoured to want to move if Allardyce stayed.
“We have made the decision that, as part of our longer-term plan, we will be appointing a new manager this summer,” said club director Denise Barrett-Baxendale.
“On behalf of the Chairman, Board of Directors and Mr Moshiri, I’d like to thank Sam for the job he has done at Everton over the last seven months.
“Sam was brought in at a challenging time last season to provide us with some stability and we are grateful to him for doing that.”
The favourite to replace Allardyce, who had a year remaining on his contract, is believed to be former Hull City and Watford boss Marco Silva.
The 40-year-old Portuguese was owner Farhad Moshiri’s first choice when he dismissed Dutchman Ronald Koeman after a disastrous start to the campaign.
However, their pursuit proved fruitless and only prompted Watford’s form to fall away and led to Silva being sacked himself in January with Watford citing an “unwarranted approach by a Premier League rival”.
The writing seemed to be on the wall for Allardyce even last month when he dismissed a survey sent to fans asking them to grade his performance out of 10 as a mistake on the part of the club’s marketing director, who he said does not “understand” how football works.
As part of the questionnaire, supporters were asked whether they agree with the statement of “I have a high level of trust in the current manager and coaching staff at Everton e.g. in making the right decisions to get the best out of the team.”