Frank Lampard’s reign as Everton manager is over after he was sacked this afternoon.
The former Chelsea and Derby boss was told his 357 day spell in charge had come to an end during a phone call with Farhad Moshiri, Everton’s major shareholder.
Despite Sportsmail’s revelation, the official announcement wasn’t made by the club until 8.15pm – more than five hours after news broke.
Frank Lampard has been sacked as Everton manager after Saturday’s dismal loss at West Ham
Jarrod Bowen scored twice for West Ham to condemn Everton to an eighth loss in nine games
It was the inevitable conclusion following weeks in which he has been on the brink and Sportsmail understands Marcelo Bielsa is Everton’s No 1 choice to take over.
Lampard had Sunday in discussions with Moshiri, Chairman Bill Kenwright and Kevin Thelwell, Everton’s Director of Football, after a 2-0 defeat at West Ham – Everton’s 11th loss in their last 14 games in all competitions.
He was aware the appetite for managerial change had grown but had been left uncertain about what direction the club might take, as some conversations he had with Moshiri centred on his views on recruitment.
Everton, who are in desperate need of new players, are close to finalising a deal to sign Arnaut Danjuma on loan until the end of the campaign but that business has been concluded while Lampard awaited to learn his fate.
Lampard leaves Goodison Park having won just 12 of his 44 games in charge of the club
The 44-year-old had 18 months left on the contract he signed on January 31 last year.
It has not yet been confirmed but it is expected his backroom staff of joe Edwards, Chris Jones, Paul Clement and Ashley Cole will also leave with Lampard.
It has been a hugely challenging time for Lampard, who had a grown to have a huge affinity for the club, was enjoying living in the North West and was desperate to bring success to a set of fans who had never given him anything other than public support.
He had seen Everton miss out on a number of transfer targets that he was keen on – most notably Danny Ings, who left Aston Villa to join West Ham – and was on the back foot from the start of the season after Richarlison was sold to Tottenham.
Everton’s problems on the field are best encapsulated by the fact they have only scored two goals or more in two of their 20 Premier League games and the lack of firepower has led to a draining of confidence.
Lampard has also had to deal with disciplinary issues within his squad and last week was forced to send Abdoulaye Doucoure to train on his own following an exchange after the 2-1 defeat to Southampton on January 14.
Everton will now begin the search for the seventh manager in the last seven years.
Defeat at West Ham saw Lampard meet Everton supporters before the game, and many believed the former Derby and Chelsea boss was already looking weary.
Since the World Cup, the Toffees have picked up just one point from five league games – a draw against Manchester City – while they have also crashed out of the FA Cup to Manchester United.
They’ve suffered damaging defeats by fellow strugglers Wolves, Southampton and West Ham over recent weeks, leaving Lampard’s position untenable.
The 44-year-old guided the Toffees to survival last year with several dramatic late-season wins
Their poor form on the pitch has also been marred by off-pitch protests by fans towards the club’s deeply unpopular board, with players such as Yerry Mina and Anthony Gordon also confronted by angry supporters after the defeat by Southampton earlier this month.
Lampard leaves Goodison Park having won just 12 of his 44 games in charge of the club, with 23 losses in that time – leaving him with a win percentage of 27 per cent.
The 44-year-old arrived at the club at the end of January 2021 having been out of work for more than a year following his departure from Chelsea.
Lampard called their win against Crystal Palace to confirm survival as ‘one of the greatest nights of my career’
LAMPARD AT EVERTON
Win percentage: 27.3
He replaced Rafael Benitez and helped guide the Toffees to safety as they secured dramatic late-season victories against Manchester United, Chelsea, Leicester and Crystal Palace to stay up after it looked as if they were doomed to relegation.
The win over Palace saw the Toffees come back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 to confirm their survival – in an evening that Lampard described as ‘one of the greatest nights of my career’.
Despite a positive start to this season that saw Everton lose just two of their first eight games and on the verge of the top half, their form has plummeted since a 2-1 win over Southampton in early October.
Either side of the World Cup break they’ve picked up just five points from 11 games and also crashed out of the Carabao Cup in embarrassing fashion – losing 4-1 to Bournemouth.
And Saturday’s defeat at the Hammers was the final straw for Lampard, with David Moyes’s side picking up their first win in eight games.
Former Burnley boss Sean Dyche is the early bookies favourite for the role, but he is not among the board’s preferred candidates and has not been approached over the role. Wayne Rooney, Duncan Ferguson and Nuno Espirito Santo have also been linked with the job.
Lampard joins an ever-growing list of managers who have been bestowed with the responsibility of taking Everton forward on Farhad Moshiri’s watch but have been cast aside, the chopping and changing causing havoc along the way. Nobody has completed two full seasons in the hot seat since 2016.
Despite being the early bookies favourite to replace Lampard, former Burnley boss Sean Dyche is not a preferred candidate to take over by the Toffees’ board