Sean Dyche has aimed a thinly-veiled dig at his Everton predecessors as he revealed he hopes to bring the "basic principles" back to Goodison Park.
The 51-year-old was confirmed as the new Everton manager on Monday afternoon, replacing Frank Lampard after the former Chelsea boss was sacked following a year in the dugout. Dyche, who has been out of work since leaving his 10-year stint at Burnley last April, has penned a deal until the summer of 2025.
However, Dyche's primary target will be to keep the Toffees in the Premier League. Everton currently sit 19th, level on points with rock bottom Southampton at the foot of the table. In his first interview since joining the club, Dyche outlined his ambitions on Merseyside and claimed he is "ready" to give the fans what they want.
Dyche told Everton's club website: "It’s an honour to become Everton manager. My staff and I are ready and eager to help get this great club back on track.
"I know about Everton’s passionate fanbase and how precious this club is to them. We’re ready to work and ready to give them what they want. That starts with sweat on the shirt, effort and getting back to some of the basic principles of what Everton Football Club has stood for for a long time. We want to bring back a good feeling. We need the fans, we need unity and we need everyone aligned. That starts with us as staff and players.
"Our aim is to put out a team that works, that fights and wears the badge with pride. The connection with the fans can then grow very quickly because they’re so passionate. There is quality in this squad. But we have to make them shine. That’s the job of me and my staff.
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"We want to change the shape of this club going forward, remodel it in our style, but in a way that we can win. That's the task in front of us - make sure we're building, tactically and technically, giving players organisation, allow them the freedom to play, to go and enjoy their football because it's brilliant when the team's playing with a smile, but we've got to win."
Infamously, Dyche publicly admitted last season after Burnley had turned a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 win over Everton that his half-time team talk had simply been: "I said to them 'I'm not sure these know how to win a game.'"
The Toffees ended up surviving the drop by the skin of their teeth but they find themselves back firmly in another relegation dogfight with 20 matches to go. They have won just three matches this season and picked up just 15 points in the process. Dyche will make his bow in when they host league leaders Arsenal on February 4.