By Nick Ware

29th Nov, 2021 | 2:10pm

Nuno Espirito Santo emerges as latest Everton contender to replace under-fire Rafa Benitez

Nuno Espirito Santo has emerged as the latest contender for the Everton manager job if the club dispenses with the services of Rafa Benitez.

That’s according to Spanish news outlet Fichajes, who claim that the Portuguese boss is being eyed with Benitez “on the tightrope” following a run of seven winless games.

The same publication had earlier reported that Denmark national team boss Kasper Hjulman was the leading contender, but Espirito Santo, recently sacked by Tottenham Hotspur, is the new name linked with the Goodison Park post.

Poisoned chalice

Benitez must be wondering whether the fuss was all worth it as speculation continues to swirl over his future as Blues boss.

Fury greeted his summer arrival as Carlo Ancelotti’s successor with many supporters refusing to forget his Liverpool past.

The mood among the Blue half of Merseyside lifted after a promising start to the season but, amid a spate of injuries and suspensions, Everton’s form has nosedived, leaving Benitez reportedly on the brink of losing his job.

The beleaguered Blues boss is currently preparing his charges for a huge clash on Wednesday as the Toffees host bitter rivals Liverpool at Goodison Park.

But his future currently hangs in the balance with Espirito Santo now linked as his replacement.

The 47-year-old was heavily linked with a move to Everton during the summer following his exit from Wolves at the end of last season.

However, he ended up at Spurs, winning the first Premier League Manager of the Month award before being sacked less than two months later, meeting his North London end on November 1.

He would likely be an unpopular appointment at Everton if the Blues board did indeed install him as successor to Benitez.

His style of football proved deeply unpopular at Spurs and he is yet to show that he can make the step up to manage a higher-calibre of players than Everton.

The Toffees squad isn’t star-studded, but the likes of Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin certainly stick out above Espirito Santo’s former players at Wolves.

In other Everton news, Alan Shearer & Ian Wright have delivered their verdict on this controversial Blues incident v Brentford.

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