Everton have been left disgusted with a message displayed on one fans’ banner in protest against their potential new manager.
Merseyside Police are currently investigating a photo after a flag threatening Rafael Benítez if he joins the Toffees was left near the former Liverpool manager’s family home.
A banner reading “We know where you live. Don’t sign” was placed close to the home Benítez shares with his wife and two daughters in Wirral.
Although police said it had been left outside the wrong address if it was aimed at the 61-year-old. Benítez and his family have lived in the area since his time with Everton’s Premier League rivals Liverpool.
To do this to someone’s family, outside the family home, is an absolute disgrace.
A step too far completely. We’re better than this as a fanbase 🔵 pic.twitter.com/Z7Wrcr7T8i
— The Bobble (@ElMuchachoEFC) June 28, 2021
Banners protesting against Benítez’s possible appointment as Everton manager were left hanging at the front of Goodison Park when it emerged he was the favoured candidate of the majority shareholder, Farhad Moshiri.
However this represents a more sinister act and it is not known whether Benítez or his family saw the banner, though it’s certainly doing the rounds on social media.
“We can confirm police are investigating reports of a threatening banner at a location in Caldy today, Monday 28 June,” a Merseyside Police statement read.
“At around 7am, it was reported that a banner made from bed sheets had been placed over a wall and bushes on a residential driveway, with wording which is thought to target football manager Rafa Benitez.
“If anyone has information about who produced the banner or helped to put it up, please let us know as soon as possible.”
Detective Inspector Darren Taylor said: “This message has understandably caused some distress and worry for residents in the area. Due to the football language used, we suspect that it was aimed at Rafa Benitez – but whoever placed the message left it outside the wrong house.”
Benitez’s previous with Liverpool has sparked widespread opposition to his appointment among Evertonians, and various banners have been put up around Goodison Park in recent days as a deal looks closer.
The 61-year-old, who picked up one Champions League title, one UEFA Super Cup and one FA Cup at the Reds, is set to be named as Everton’s new manager this week after agreeing key aspects of his contract with the club.
He will become their fifth permanent manager in as many years and will replace Carlo Ancelotti, who left to return to Real Madrid earlier this month.
Everton are understood to have considered up to eight candidates before deciding on Benitez, who left his post as Dalian Yifang head coach earlier in 2021.
Sam Allardyce believes Rafa can appease any Everton fans unhappy at his expected appointment simply by winning matches.
“The fans are on your side when you start winning, that is what it is all about,” he told Sky Sports News.
“I’m sure there are a lot of Everton fans who are unhappy with the situation because of the rivalry with Liverpool. Rafa’s track record is very good.
“You can talk about the style of football that you play, first it is winning and then winning and playing well is the ultimate goal.
“The style of football is talked about so much, it overshadows what is more important, winning matches and finishing up the league to match the expectation and money spent.”
Allardyce also says Everton should not expect Benitez to bring an “open and expansive” style of football to Goodison Park, arguing that the Spaniard employs a similar approach to himself – a style which has often been described as defensive-minded.
“I have to say that if you call me a defensive-minded coach, Rafa is exactly the same as I am. He bases his performances on clean sheets and building from there and has done throughout his career,” Allardyce said.
“So if they are talking about open, expansive football, I do not think that will be the case if they are employing someone like Rafa.
“It will come eventually depending on what players they let go and bring in. Everton have been desperate for success since Farad Moshiri took over, he’s put a huge amount of money in that has built the club’s expectations so high, it’s difficult for the players there to live up to that.
“I think it is now six managers in seven years at Everton, that needs some stability in terms of the manager staying in place for a few years to get it right.”
As mentioned Everton have been left disgusted with the message displayed on the fans’ banner, Twitter users have reacted…
@TommyE1992: I thought they knew where he lived?? 😂
@jamiebennett_r: Typical Everton always missing the target 😂
@EvertonNewsFeed: Ashamed and embarrassed
@notsimon1878: 100% not what our football club is about utterly embarrassing. Forget about football in this instance I feel for his family and Benitez himself.
@Andy_LFC93: It’s not what any football club should be about – it’s a game of footy
@Carroll350D: “The people’s club”
@BramleyToffee: Thats correct, we are. An individual puts up this disgusting flag which has been widely condemned. You more than anyone know that individuals and small groups do not reflect an entire fan base
@ektelfc_petter: U don’t have to want Rafa as your Everton manager, and we dont have to like that he’s going there, as a Liverpool supporter, but ffs behave!! He’s a kind man and a true gentleman 🙏👍
@Wazefc83: This will make a section of our fan base want Benitez to succeed even more this is embarrassing
@PaddyWeathers4: Shit like that IMO will galvanise a percentage of the fanbase as they’ll be so ashamed of that behaviour they’ll go out of the way to back him. Even though it’s all still a bit surreal.
@EFCevs: Complete and utter disgrace that. You might not want him as your manager but to threaten him and his family?! You’re not part of my club
@GOT_Groucho: Absolutely disgraceful. It’ll be from the same ones who call everyone who disagrees with them ‘kopites’ too.
@simmy1878: That is a disgrace. If anyone thinks this is acceptable then they need to take a look at themselves in the mirror.
@LittleJim08: The graffiti & banners outside Goodison are bad enough but this is threatening behaviour and a matter for the Police. Shameful.
@knerts1878: I don’t want Benitez, but we could do worse. I am sure some of these fans would be content for Bill to appoint Moyes again and bleat on about the boys pen: the owners will appoint who they feel is best, rightly or wrongly, not sure Abramovich worries, small time behaviour.
@LeighEvans_2: That’s disgusting!!! Ashamed to be an Everton fan seeing that
@BrunsypPB: Out of order in every way, i’m not for his appointment in any way, flags i can accept, personal insults and hounding him outside his home is in no way acceptable behaviour, voice your opinions in other ways.
@Hugodrax0077: One of the darkest days
@EFCMatt1: It’s utterly shameful & embarrassing. It’s criminal behaviour & should be treated as such.
@pjhj51: Bloody disgusting behaviour. These people need to question their actions. Supporting your football team is meant to be a joy and pleasure, and should not involve mindless and threatening behaviour like this. Stop now, it’s getting embarrassing. COYB.
@TheFilmOracle: As a Newcastle fan to Evertonians, you don’t know how lucky you are getting Rafa.
@jozmanpr0: I’m absolutely embarrassed to call myself an Evertonian.
@kunaladeshmukh: You should be used to with saying that..
@benjwinstanley: Makes me want him to succeed with behaviour like this. Prove these idiots wrong.
@JohnMag56234452: Seeing like this makes we want him to absolutely smash it and be a massive success. Absolute vermin
@IanG1878: That’s well out of order. Should be utterly ashamed of themselves.
@Hendo1980: Why football fans are arseholes, part 28479 in a series of 382749271
@samstew4rt: What is wrong with people?
@RetroSolesUK: Over football, get a grip,sad c#@ts
@Skyblue_Dave1: Really, this is fucking disgusting. We all have rivalries in football and people we hate but it’s just a game and it’s just being a scumbag to threaten someone’s live and their families lives over it.
@EFCNovaScotia: Shameful that people think this is acceptable. As I’ve said before, I’ve no issue with banners but personal abuse and threats are not acceptable. Will be hard to trace who made this but I hope the club give them a lifetime stadium ban.
@flyer_chris737: With stuff like this we don’t deserve any decent manager! Until the mentality of some supporters changes on many levels and we stop this negative thinking, the club will continue on its mediocre course in terms of on the field. Positive thinking means positive change!
@marcymarc1972: Looking in from the outside as a Palace fan, this is dreadful. Anybody in their right mind would not do something like this, especially when the guy has his wife and children there. I would not care a damm if Benitez managed our main rivals and came to us, the guy is quality.
@EvertonBlueArmy: Protesting the appointment of Benitez is fine. Threatening him and his family with a banner outside his home has completely crossed the line. Utterly disgraceful.
With Everton left disgusted with message displayed on fans’ banner, do you think Benitez would be a good appointment for the club? Let us know your thoughts via our socials!
— NUFC 360 (@NUFC360) June 28, 2021