(Reuters) - Interim Everton boss Duncan Ferguson has said he would like to sign off on a high if Saturday’s early Premier League kickoff against Arsenal is to be his final game in charge of the Merseyside club.
The former striker, a longtime member of Everton’s coaching staff, was handed the reins after Marco Silva was sacked earlier this month when Everton dropped into the relegation zone following a 5-2 defeat by Liverpool.
Ferguson has steadied the ship since taking over, beating Chelsea at home and drawing at Manchester United in the league, and losing to Leicester City on penalties in the League Cup.
Everton, who are now 16th in the standings, are expected to announce a new permanent manager soon, with Carlo Ancelotti widely reported to be the front-runner for the position.
“If it is to end tomorrow, then hopefully it will end on a high,” Ferguson told a news conference on Friday. “The players have been incredible.
“I’m happy with the job I’ve done... I think we’ve got a little bit of the club back, back to the fans. We’ve all pulled together... (but) we’re still in a perilous position.
“We’ve proved that we can beat top teams. We need to sustain that now... we need to continue it, push up the league and away from the relegation zone.”
Ferguson said he did not know who Everton would unveil as their next boss and added that he would like to keep working at the club.
“I’ve not spoken to anyone,” he said. “It’d be fantastic to work under a top manager... Nobody knows the players better than me. I hope whoever comes in uses me.”
He conceded, however, being aware of reports that Ancelotti, a three-times Champions League winner who has also won domestic league titles in England (with Chelsea), Italy, Germany and France, was in the frame.
“(I’ve heard) the same rumours as everyone else,” the 47-year-old said. “I don’t want to really comment because I don’t know who the next manager is going to be... but the guy’s incredible. He’s won everything.”
Ferguson described his time in charge as a great education and said he wanted to return to management in the future.
“It’s not something I’m particularly pushing for at the moment,” he added. “Maybe two or three years down the line.”
Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.