Everton have received a potentially significant boost as the club approaches a pivotal period under the stewardship of under-pressure manager Rafa Benitez.
Rumours circulated on Monday suggesting that popular assistant manager Duncan Ferguson was set to depart the Merseyside outfit as the behind-the-scenes changes continue to gather pace.
Former director of football Marcel Brands recently departed after three-and-a-half years in the role, following board member Sarvar Ismailov out of the exit door.
Following Brands’ shock and sudden exit, head of recruitment and development Gretar Steinsson and ex-manager of scouting and operations Dan Purdy also left the Toffees as Benitez begins to re-shape his backroom staff.
The ongoing shake-up at Everton led to speculation that Ferguson was going to be the next to seek pastures new, but The Athletic’s Greg O’Keeffe has poured cold water on those theories.
He tweeted: “From what I’m hearing Duncan Ferguson isn’t on the brink of leaving #Everton despite the rumours on Twitter last night”.
News that Ferguson is set to remain in his position as Benitez’s No.2 will surely leave the club’s supporters buzzing, given his importance to the club and popularity amongst the fanbase.
The 49-year-old earned legendary status at Everton after scoring 68 goals across 260 games for the club, becoming their seventh-highest goalscorer in the process.
After arriving from Rangers in 1995, the former Scotland international remained at Goodison Park until 1999 before joining Newcastle United, but re-joined the Blues just 12 months later, eventually retiring in 2006.
His FA Cup success in his maiden campaign in English football was the beginning of a magical relationship with Everton that has continued until the present day.
Since then, Ferguson has been a long-serving coach at Everton, even taking charge of the first-team on an interim basis for four games back in 2019 after Marco Silva was sacked.
He’s since been an assistant to both Carlo Ancelotti and Benitez, and the Spanish tactician appeared keen for Ferguson to remain in his current role upon his appointment last summer.
“Duncan is an Everton legend and has great experience,” the 61-year-old said. “He will be vital for us with his coaching expertise and understanding of the players.
“His spirit, personality and character are invaluable. He knows the club and people and what the Evertonians expect from their players. He will be an inspiration for us and crucial with his insight.”
Therefore, Everton fans will surely be delighted at O’Keeffe’s latest revelation and looking forward to many more years of Ferguson’s insight.