Football pundit Paul Merson has expressed his belief that Everton should have “pulled the trigger” on former manager Frank Lampard sooner than they did.
Speaking to SportsKeeda he insisted that the Toffees would not have dropped as many points this season had they appointed Sean Dyche at an earlier point in the campaign.
He said: “Sean Dyche is a very good manager and the top brass are probably sitting there thinking they should have pulled the trigger earlier on Frank Lampard.
“If they had brought Dyche in a bit sooner than they eventually did, they wouldn’t have gotten beaten by some of the teams that beat them towards the end of Lampard’s reign. If Everton draw this game, they’ve turned it around already.”
Should Lampard have gone sooner?
Frank Lampard became a popular figure at Goodison Park, successfully securing Everton’s Premier League status last season following the dismissal of Rafael Benitez, the ex-Derby County boss built a rapport with an impassioned fanbase.
However, the Blues struggled to get points on the board in the opening half of the season, and once again find themselves in a scrap for survival.
Out of the opening 15 Premier League fixtures prior to the 2022 World Cup, Everton earned just 14 points, losing at Bournemouth twice in the space of four days with an aggregate score of 7-1 to the south coast club.
Everton didn’t fair much better following Argentina’s triumph in Qatar, earning just one point out of the first five post-World Cup Premier League fixtures, surprisingly at Manchester City in a 1-1 draw.
Home defeats to fellow strugglers Wolves and Southampton, and a 4-1 hammering against Brighton & Hove Albion made Frank Lampard’s position untenable, and he was eventually dismissed following a 2-0 defeat at West Ham United.
Sean Dyche revives tired toffees after Frank Lampard dismissal
However, Goodison has witnessed a mini revival following the appointment of Sean Dyche, with six points out of a possible nine on the board, with a compacted three-man midfield paying dividends, as the outcasted Abdoulaye Doucoure returning to the starting XI alongside Idrissa Gueye and Amadou Onana.
Had Dyche came in during the World Cup break, he would have had time to prepare his side for the resumption of Premier League football, and with just four Everton players travelling to Qatar he would have had the majority of the squad to work with during those six weeks.
Defeats to the teams around the drop zone could prove costly as the season progresses, and Everton’s board could well be thinking they’ve made a mistake in not appointing Sean Dyche sooner.