Everton owner Farhad Moshiri has given his support to manager under pressure Frank Lampard and the club’s board in a statement to fans.
The Merseysiders are 18th in the table after just one win in their last 10 Premier League matches, which has led some fans to criticize Moshiri’s record at the helm and call for changes in the Goodison hierarchy.
But in a statement to the Merseyside club’s fan forum, the British-Iranian billionaire defended his tenure as majority investor since 2016, while also saying he understood the supporters’ concern and that the league’s position “has to improve”.
He also emphasized the need for stability, with Lampard the seventh permanent manager in six-and-a-half years.
“In the nearly seven years since my arrival at the club, I have greatly increased my investment and our new stadium has become a reality,” Moshiri wrote.
“We regularly review our performance and initiate change where we feel the club is not up to the mark. This means we have seen a change of directors, directors of football and many board members, but always as we strive for success.
While, in almost every case, change is supported and encouraged by fans, stability must be the key to progress.
“I have faith in the work being done by not only our Director, but our Director of Football and our Board of Directors. That faith is based on knowing the depth and quality of the work being done at both Finch Farm and the Royal Liver Building – and the plan that is in place.
“I am confident that we have skilled, experienced and focused professionals at all levels of the club. We are all in agreement that our current position in the league must and will improve.”
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Lampard’s team narrowly avoided relegation last season and was forced in the summer to sell its best player, Richarlison, to avoid violating the rules of financial fair play in the first division.
They are desperate to attack for reinforcements in the transfer window this month, with the third lowest goal tally in the division, but have yet to make signings as the opposition strengthen.
Some fans dissatisfied with the performance of the club’s board will stage a sit-in protest after their game at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Many cheered for changes in Everton’s hierarchy during last week’s 4-1 defeat at Brighton, and again after their FA Cup exit at the hands of Manchester United at Old Trafford three days later.
Now a coalition of fans and social media channels, along with some official supporting clubs, have launched an ‘All Together Now’ campaign to urge owner Farhad Moshiri to acknowledge their concerns about the club’s predicament.
A statement from the group read that the fans “pledge their support for Frank Lampard and the team by resuming the coach’s pre-match salute and full support during the match.”
But, she added, they “can no longer tolerate club owner Farhad Moshiri’s failure to address glaring shortcomings in leadership at the presidency, board and executive levels.”
The Merseyside club are hoping to move to a new £500m stadium, funded by Moshiri, in the next few years.
They have also recently completed a strategic review of football operations which has resulted in a series of key personnel changes around the first team and academy with the aim of progressing on and off the field.
This season, they also set up their first elected fans’ advisory council to improve dialogue with supporters, which Moshiri talks about in his statement.
Tonight, the board will hold its first of three meetings with fans to discuss their thoughts on the club.
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(Photo: Getty Images)