Everton have parted company with Sam Allardyce despite the former England manager having another year left to run on his contract at Goodison Park.
Allardyce was appointed as successor to Ronald Koeman on and 18-month deal last November, with an immediate brief of guiding Everton away from relegation danger.
That was accomplished soon enough, but a significant section of the Merseyside club’s fanbase have become disgruntled with a perceived negative style of football under the 63-year-old former England boss.
Despite leading Everton to an eighth-place finish, Allardyce’s widely anticipated departure was confirmed on Wednesday.
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Everton chief executive professor Denise Barrett-Baxendale said: “On behalf of the chairman, board of directors and [Everton owner Farhad] Moshiri, I’d like to thank Sam for the job he has done at Everton over the last seven months.
“Sam was brought in at a challenging time last season to provide us with some stability and we are grateful to him for doing that.
“However, we have made the decision that, as part of our longer-term plan, we will be appointing a new manager this summer and will be commencing this process immediately.
“Again, we’d like to place on record our sincere thanks to Sam for his work with us over the last few months and wish him well for the future.”