By George Overhill

3rd Feb, 2023 | 7:10pm

Everton failing to sign target after target on transfer deadline day led to claims Kevin Thelwell had offered to quit, but this was not the case, Mail+ reports.

The director of football plays a key role in recruitment for the playing staff, and indeed the manager, but as the Toffees went entirely empty-handed throughout January after appointing Sean Dyche late in the window there were apparently unfounded suggestions going round that he had tried to leave his role during the fruitless final day.

Links to Reading forward Lucas Joao arose on deadline day but it was reportedly Everton who rejected that move, while any attempt of Thelwell to depart afterwards have been clearly disputed by this report.

Dominic King writes for Mail+ on Friday (3 February): “Another option on deadline day was Reading’s Lucas Joao but Everton rejected that and, amid the drama, there were claims that director of football Kevin Thelwell had offered to quit.

“That was never the case, with Thelwell committed to working alongside Dyche.”

Wicked whispers

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It wouldn’t make a great deal of sense if Thelwell wasn’t committed to working with Dyche since he would have played a role in his appointment in the first place.

It is perhaps a logical conclusion from the outside that repeated knock backs in the market late in the window, and particularly on deadline day, that the former Wolves and New York Red Bull man might have been tempted to give up, although it isn’t clear where this claims actually came from, but this is apparently not the case.

Thelwell’s role in the disastrous January has been called into question in some quarters however, after nobody came in despite a six-week break for the World Cup coming shortly before the window opened, seemingly providing plenty of opportunity to get deals lined up ahead of time.

In that context it wouldn’t be the most unexpected news to hear he had left, but King has been pretty unequivocal in his Mail report that it is not accurate.

There are going to be more than a few fans who wouldn’t be sorry to see the back of him in the wake of the window, but he surely comes a fair way behind the likes of Farhad Moshiri and Bill Kenwright in the list of figures the fanbase would like to see move on.

A huge job has been handed to Dyche over the second half of the season, with very little in the way of help, especially when Anthony Gordon was sold just before he arrived.

And since Frank Lampard was sacked for the poor form of the team it doesn’t sound like any other senior members of the hierarchy are going to leave in the near future, although plenty would rather that they did.