(Reuters) – Portuguese manager Vitor Pereira said he still wants to take charge of Everton following the sacking of Rafa Benitez, despite a backlash from some supporters over his potential appointment and reports Frank Lampard is also in the hunt.
Everton dismissed Benitez this month with the club 16th in the Premier League with Pereira among the favourites to take over, although British media reported former Chelsea boss Lampard was also in contention.
News of the potential appointment of Pereira, who has coached Porto, Olympiakos Piraeus, 1860 Munich and Shanghai SIPG, did not go down well with some fans, with the message: ‘Pereira out, Lampard in’ being daubed on a wall at Goodison Park.
“This is the first time in my career I’ve seen these types of things,” Pereira told Sky Sports. “I’ve never had these kind of comments about me. My CV speaks for itself. It’s the environment now because the club isn’t in a good position.
“The supporters have passion and this passion I think is the power of this club. I remember well when I watched the games of Everton a few years ago, sometimes the supporters won the game. The passion … can be to the positive or the negative side.
“In this moment, what a manager should do is bring again this positive passion for the supporters. I don’t take this as a personal attack.”
Pereira, who was sacked by Turkish Super Lig side Fenerbahce in December, said he was not worried that the reaction of some Everton fans could influence the club’s decision.
“This is something that I cannot control. But what I want to tell you is, all of my career, I worked under pressure. I worked in clubs that cannot draw one game,” Pereira said.
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)