Carlo Ancelotti: Everton hopeful of appointing Italian as Marco Silva’s replacement

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Ancelotti was dismissed by Napoli earlier this season despite guiding them into the Champions League knockout stage

Everton are hopeful of appointing Carlo Ancelotti as manager as positive talks continue.

Ancelotti, 60, has been Everton's top target to succeed sacked Marco Silva.

The Italian held face-to-face discussions with Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri in London earlier this week.

But caretaker manager Duncan Ferguson is set to be in charge of Saturday's home game against Arsenal, even if Ancelotti's appointment is finalised.

Ferguson will be part of any future management team, his stock rising after a spectacular impact on and off the field, winning against Chelsea, drawing at Manchester United and only losing on penalties to Leicester City in the Carabao Cup quarter-final after Everton came from two goals down.

Everton owner Moshiri has long desired a world-renowned manager in charge at Goodison Park. Ancelotti, one of the most successful coaches in the modern game, fits the bill.

Moshiri is certain to have not only promised Ancelotti a lucrative personal package in a long-term contract but also substantial funds to reshape the side that has struggled this season.

Ferguson ‘gutted' after League Cup loss

Ferguson has had a positive impact on the club and has been credited with reigniting the fight within the players following three successive defeats in Silva's final games that left the Toffees on the cusp of the Premier League relegation zone.

Evertonagainst showed plenty of spirit against Leicester, battling back from two goals down to take the game to penalties, only to be undone by two Kasper Schmeichel saves.

“They're obviously gutted in there,” Ferguson said after the game. “There's a lot of tears. I'm gutted for Seamus Coleman, Leighton Baines, guys like that.

“It was a big chance for us to get to the semi-final, we're at home and I was just really disappointed in the first-half performance.

“I thought the second half they showed much more aggression and we put in a very good second-half performance.

“It just wasn't to be unfortunately.”

Duncan Ferguson is my hero – what you said

Anthony Bellew: Was a tough one that!! Heartbreaking to go out like that! The lads did brilliant and fought until the very end! Proud of them and the job Duncan Ferguson is doing! Into the weekend we go.

Gary Woods: Duncan Ferguson today on the sideline, the changes he made, how he is for the full match, I genuinely think if he was given this job full time he would be a great manager. People aren't picking up on the tactical side, but all signs are he would be great.

Peter Needham: Genuinely not sure any other manager could have done any better than Duncan Ferguson has. Absolutely miraculous, game after game.

Adam Hancock: Excited for Ancelotti but will miss Duncan Ferguson lobbing his blazer off and wearing just a shirt on a Wednesday night in peak winter. My hero.

Ian Cahoon: If Duncan Ferguson isn't hugging a ballboy, are Everton even playing at home?

Matthew Roberts: I love the way Duncan Ferguson has galvanised Everton and the passion he has for the club. He was my hero growing up & is a legend among Evertonians. I would love it if he got to manage Everton on more permanent basis one day, even if he needs to gain more experience first.

Delight, dejection, delirium – the five stages of Ferguson

All smiles before the game as Duncan Ferguson greets Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers
Smiles turn to frustration as his side falls behind to two goals in three first-half minutes
Two nil down and time ticking away, Ferguson looks gutted as Everton appear to be heading to defeat
But a Tom Davies volley has Everton back in the game and Ferguson gives Ferguson a spring in his step once more
And at 2-2 the comeback is complete. Time to hug a ballboy
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