Unsworth: I feel ready to manage Everton

Tuesday, 24 October, 2017 0comments  |  Jump to last
Updated David Unsworth has declared his desire to prove he is worthy of managing Everton on a permanent basis following the sacking of Ronald Koeman this week.

The Dutchman was dismissed as the Blues' manager yesterday on the back of a run of results that had left the club in 18th place in the Premier League and bottom of the Europa League.

Just two wins in the last 13 games in all competitions prompted Everton's major shareholder Farhad Moshiri to fire Koeman just 16 months into a three-year contract and while the search for a viable successor gets underway, Unsworth will act as caretaker manager, most likely until the upcoming international break next month.

Unsworth, the current head coach of the Under-23s, will be joined by his assistant John Ebbrell in charge of first-team affairs for tomorrow's League Cup tie at Chelsea and he's hopeful of getting a run of games to showcase his ability to perhaps succeed Koeman himself. Goalkeeping coach Alan Kelly has also been brought on board.

The 44-year-old, who has earned plaudits within the club for stellar work with the U23s, has acted as stand-in for the first team once before, overseeing Everton's 3-0 win over Norwich City in May last year after Roberto Martinez had parted company with the Blues.

And he was back in the media centre at USM Finch Farm this afternoon to take questions from television reporters ahead of the Chelsea game and he admitted that he felt ready to make the step up to management of the Toffees' first team.

“I'm a very proud man to be asked by the Chairman and the owner to take the team," Unsworth began. "At the same time, it's always a tough time whenever any manager lose his job because I've been in football forever and when any manager or coach loses his job, you know that one day that could be you.

“So, it's tough but it's the business we're in. From a personal point of view, I'm a very proud man sat here, fit and able to lead Everton out for.. it doesn't matter how many games. I'll stand there and give it everything I've got.

“It was a very easy decision to make. I sat down with the Chairman yesterday, we spoke everything Everton — from home many games to individual players to plans for the short term, long term.

“But it's not a difficult decision at all to stand as Everton manager. If you're an Evertonian, it makes you very proud.

“Who wouldn't want this job?” he continued when asked if the full-time role was something he was interested in. “It's a wonderful club with amazing fans and it is a top job for absolutely any manager, myself included.

“The Chairman, Farhad (Moshiri) [and the Board have] given me the opportunity to hopefully get a run of games where performances levels go up and we produce some wins as well.

“From that, performances and results will dictate any future for me as Everton manager. I want to manage and this is an amazing club to be manager of. The time has to come to say that [I feel ready to make the step up from the Under-23s]; I've made no secret of it at all.

“However, I do have a wonderful job that is a challenge and it's something I really enjoy. What will be will be; I'll just do my best on the training ground everyday and within the games with the staff I've got, with the players we've got and we'll try and win a few football matches.”

Unsworth was asked for his take on Koeman's dismissal which brought to an end a tenure that many had anticipated could be transformative for the club.

He was matter-of-fact about the out-going boss's situation, highlighting that it's a results-based business and Everton's have not been good enough so far this season.

“Everybody will have their opinions and quite rightly so,” he said. “The bottom line for any manager when they lose their job is, did you win enough games and, unfortunately, we're in a position where you're going to say, no we haven't.

“But at any football club, if you don't win enough games your position is always be the subject of much debate.

"The club needs a winning manager. That's simple. Whoever gets the honour of having this role has to win. We want a winning manager, someone who knows this club and can win trophies because that's what we need."  

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