Louis Saha Exclusive: Rooney Ready For Everton Job
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Louis Saha Exclusive: Rooney Ready For Everton Job

Former Everton striker Louis Saha is confident his old team-mate Wayne Rooney is ready to become the Toffees' new manager. Everton sacked Rafa Benitez after a 2-1 defeat to Norwich City last weekend, which left the Merseyside club 16th in the Premier League – just six points above the relegation zone. Rooney is the head coach of Championship side Derby County but remains in contention for the top job at Goodison Park. And Saha is convinced England's all-time top scorer has what it takes to solve Everton's issues, after leading the Rams to eight wins and 11 draws from 26 games – despite the club's off-field issues.


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Confident Rooney Is Ready

Speaking exclusively to Genting, he said: “I have full confidence that Wayne Rooney would be ready to return to his boyhood club. 

“Look at the job that he is doing at Derby in unbelievably tough conditions. He would need to have the right team around him to help him step up. 

“With all due respect to Derby County, managing Everton is a big leap but a magnificent challenge.

“We know that Wayne Rooney wants to win in whatever he does. As a manager, he will want to test himself at the highest level and will be ready for the challenge. 

“I'm confident he would be successful because of his pedigree as a player and also as a person. 

“He's smart, dedicated and he knows the club inside and out – this is his boyhood club – he has the tattoo! 

“I honestly think he would be a perfect match for the club. He can create the right foundation for the club to improve. 

“I'm not talking about Wayne like this because I played with him. It is because I believe he is ready to do it. 

“He won't come with an ego as a manager because he is still learning the role. He will come as Wayne. 

“If Mikel Arteta has done it with Arsenal, then Wayne Rooney can do it with Everton.”

Benitez Sacking Justified

Saha explained that he felt Everton were justified in their decision to part ways with Benitez.

However, the one-time France international has also pointed out the potential ramifications of Benitez being allowed to have such a great deal of influence on the club’s structure.

“It was the right decision [to sack Benitez] because he wasn't able to deliver results and performances,” he explained.

“In many ways, it reminds me of Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] at [Manchester] United – managers understand that football is a results business and if you can't deliver them, you have to face the consequences. 

“[Benitez] has constructed the club in his image by removing the sporting director and changing the medical staff, but now he has gone. 

“When you make these demands as a manager, you have to get results on the pitch. Invariably, some of the players and staff wouldn't have been happy with these decisions. 

“If you're going to make all of these changes, you need to demonstrate progress. He couldn't survive there.”




Benitez Decision Making Questionable

Saha pointed to the sale of left-back Lucas Digne to Aston Villa as a prime example of significant changes the Spaniard had been allowed to make, before being removed from his post.

“I can't understand the decision making,” he said. “Lucas Digne is a formidable player. He's been unbelievable for Everton. 

“For years, he has been one of the best attacking sources at the club and creates so many goals for the strikers. 

“I don't understand how Everton can let a player of that quality leave if they want to be successful and win football matches. 

“They haven’t been creating enough chances for the strikers – trying to replace the chances he creates will be very hard. 

“This was a shocking decision that doesn't make any sense, especially now Rafa Benitez has gone.

“The fans will be gutted with the current situation. The club appointed a manager that many of them didn't want and now they've sold one of their top players. 

“In some ways, I feel sorry for the board members because their relationship with the fans is currently difficult, they've fired a manager and they’ve lost a really good player. Hopefully the situation can improve soon.”

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