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Ferguson backs Lampard for success as he announces Everton exit

Duncan Ferguson has backed Frank Lampard for success at Everton after announcing his exit from the club.

Ferguson has announced a decision to leave his coaching role at Everton in order to pursue his own managerial ambitions, having worked on the Toffees’ backroom staff under a succession of different managers.

 

The 50-year-old has also had two spells as caretaker manager, most recently between the sacking of Rafael Benitez and appointment of Lampard last season.

Ferguson – who scored 73 goals in 273 appearances across two spells as a player at Everton – returned to the Merseyside club as an academy coach in 2011, before being promoted to the first-team three years later.

He has described his departure as a ‘massive decision’, but says he is ready to step into management and take on a ‘new challenge’ in his career.

“It’s been a massive decision for me,” Ferguson told evertontv. “An incredibly difficult one but I need to move on, to take that next step in my career and look for that new challenge. Being a caretaker manager has given me confidence to step into management.

“The club has been fantastic with me. They’ve supported me all the way through my journey. You’ve got the chairman who has supported me as a player and as a coach. He’s been amazing with me, so I would like to thank him. And then there’s people like our CEO Denise [Barrett-Baxendale] who has been fantastic.

“It really is a caring club with some proper people in it. They’re massive Evertonians.

“And, of course, there’s the fans. They’ve been incredible to me since I came in ’94. We’ve got a strong bond. The relationship we’ve had over the years has been special. They know how much they mean to me. I’ll always love them.”

Everton endured a disappointing campaign last season to narrowly avoid relegation from the Premier League, though Ferguson believes the club are in good hands with Lampard and has backed the current manager to bring success to Goodison Park.

“It was difficult last season but this club is definitely heading in the right direction. It’s a fantastic club.

“The team is in good hands with Frank as manager. He’s been first class and he wanted me to stay on.

“I can’t speak highly enough of Frank. He’s a great man and a great young manager, I’m sure he’ll do very well for Everton.

“There’s also the new stadium on the horizon which is going to be unbelievable for the club.

“I’ll be there as a supporter. My kids have got season tickets and I’ll be looking forward to coming back.”

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