Martínez walks out on Everton
Spanish manager, Roberto Martínez has reportedly stepped down from his position as manager at Everton F.C. The Spaniard as been at Goodison for only a year, but his resignation remains a great disappointment to Everton fans across the country.
Martínez's reign began after the departure of long term manager, David Moyes who left to replace the great, Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United. It was never going to be easy replacing a manager who had been at the club for going on 8 years and done a brilliant job. Martínez however did it perfectly.
Everton began the season well, with only 1 defeat in the opening 18 games, fewest in all 4 English divisions, and a record bettered only by Bayern Munich and AS Roma across Europe's top leagues. On 4 December 2013, Everton beat champions Manchester United, now managed by David Moyes, 1-0 at Old Trafford, their first win at the Manchester club's ground for 21 years.
At Christmas, the club sat in 5th place in the league, only 2 points from the top, very much in the thick of what promised to be the most closely fought Premier League title race in history. Any hope of gaining Champions League football ended with consecutive defeats to Southampton and eventual champions Manchester City. The club did however qualify for next seasons Europa League, finishing in 5th with 72 points, 7 away from 4th placed Arsenal and their highest point tally since the Premier League started.
All of this made the news all the more suprising when chairman, Bill Kenwright released the news of Martínez's resignation. According to Kenwright, Martínez left following a dispute over transfer funds following the signing of big Belgian, Romelu Lukaku. He still failed to reveal the actual budget that Everton's following manager will have to spend.
Everton was not Martínez's first venture into management after spells at both Swansea City and Wigan Athletic. Martínez took the job at Swansea at the young age of 33 following a 3 year long run a midfielder for the Welsh club. Martínez led Swansea to become League One champions, securing a spot in England's second tier division for the first time in 24 years for the Swans.
Next stop for the Spaniard was Wigan Athletic in the Premier League. Martínez described that the offer was too good to turn down after being criticized by supporters of Swansea. His first season at Wigan can only be described as inconsistent with home wins against Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal, but also a series of heavy defeats. Including a 9-1 defeat to Tottenham Hotspurs, a club record defeat for Wigan. His next season was heavily improved with a rally towards the latter end of the season causing Wigan to finish at 15th - seven points clear of relegation. In his final season with the latics, Martínez led Wigan through their most successful FA Cup campaign as they won it for the first time in the clubs history. Despite the glory of holding the FA Cup, Wigan were relagated down to the Championship, forcing a move from Martínez as he believed that he's 'not the man to lead them back to the premier league'
Everton captain Phil Jagielka took the media to say,
'We must get behind the manager no matter who is thrown in charge of the club. The same way we got behind Roberto when he arrived and, although I wasn't here, Moyes when he was put in charge. The board know the right way forward for the club and I trust that they will make the right decision. All we as players need to worry about is pushing on and progressing as a football club.'