Everton's English manager Sam Allardyce looks on before the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Everton at the Bet365 Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent, central England, on March 17, 2018. (ROLAND HARRISON / AFP)
LIVERPOOL — Sam Allardyce was fired as Everton manager on Wednesday after his pragmatic style of football proved unpopular with fans despite helping to keep the team in the Premier League.
Allardyce lasted seven months at Everton after signing an 18-month deal with the northwest club in late November when it was near the relegation zone. Everton finished the season in eighth place on Sunday.
But that wasn't enough to satisfy Everton supporters who openly voiced their displeasure at the team's often dour approach in the final games of the season.
"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," said Denise Barrett-Baxendale, Everton's newly hired chief executive. "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."
British media reported that Marco Silva, who has managed Hull and Watford in the Premier League over the last two seasons, could take over.
Everton tried to bring Silva in from Watford before settling on Allardyce as the replacement for the fired Ronald Koeman. Watford filed a complaint to the Premier League about Everton's conduct in approaching Silva, who eventually left Watford in January.
In another change to Everton's leadership, PSV Eindhoven announced on Wednesday that director of football Marcel Brands is leaving to join the English club.
In eight years in Eindhoven, Brands helped rebuild PSV and turn a club that often lagged behind Ajax into the Eredivisie champion in three of the last four seasons.
If things had gone differently for Allardyce, he could have been naming the England squad for the World Cup on Wednesday. Instead, he is leaving yet another Premier League club.
He was hired as England coach after the European Championship in 2016 but lasted only 67 days before having his contract terminated because of unguarded comments to undercover reporters about illegal transfer practices, which the English Football Association thought had made his position as national team coach untenable.
Since then, he has guided Crystal Palace and now Everton to Premier League safety in consecutive seasons, cementing his status as a so-called "firefighter" at struggling clubs. He did the same with Sunderland, and also established Blackburn and West Ham as solid Premier League teams.
In a 27-year coaching career, he has also managed Newcastle and Bolton in England's top division.