Everton have finally agreed terms with Southampton over the appointment of Ronald Koeman as their new team manager, after days of protracted negotiations.
BBC Sport is reporting that a £5m compensation deal between Everton and the Saints is involved, with Koeman being offered a £6m or £7m-per-year contract, according to several sources.
The 53-year-old succeeds Roberto Martinez, who was sacked by the Blues last month after just three seasons in charge, and Koeman, who is currently on holiday, will take brother Erwin and fitness coach Jan Kluitenberg with him to Everton.
Media reports both in the UK and the Netherlands suggested Koeman was Everton’s number one target since Martinez’ departure, yet Unai Emery, Frank De Boer and former boss David Moyes were also heavily linked with the job.
Under Koeman, Southampton qualified for the Europa League in successive seasons, while Everton struggled to bottom half finishes. It is believed Koeman’s relative success and prior knowledge of the Premier League cemented his place as the Toffees’ preferred choice.
The appointment of the Dutchman as head coach comes as part of the Goodison Park club adopting a new set up. Everton are also seeking to employ a Director of Football and Koeman has worked in a similar environment with Southampton, PSV Eindhoven and Valencia.
Koeman, who won European Cups with PSV and Barcelona as a player, also operated under a Director of Football in his very first managerial role with Vitesse Arnhem.
After leading Vitesse to a UEFA Cup spot, Koeman returned to Ajax, where he spent three seasons as a player. This time he would stay for four full campaigns, winning the Eredivisie twice and domestic cup once, and completing the double in his first season in charge.
Post-Ajax, Koeman took charge of four different clubs in four years. He won the Portuguese Super Cup with Benfica, before returning to Dutch football with former club, PSV. In his only full season in charge at Eindhoven, he led to them to the Eredvisie title – his third as manager and seventh overall.
Valencia were the next club to attract the Dutchman, but his stint in Spain was a mixed bag. Koeman led Los Che to their first Copa Del Rey since 1999, but their dire league form left them in 15th, only two points above the relegation zone. He was sacked after just six months in charge.
Following Valencia, Koeman went back to the Eredvisie but unlike his previous endeavours in the Dutch top tier, he would not get his hands on the league title. In May 2009, he was appointed the manager of AZ Alkmaar, but a miserable start to the 2009/10 season saw him dismissed before the year was out.
From July 2011, Koeman spent two and a half years at Feyenoord, becoming the first man to play for and manage the traditional big three of Dutch football. He then finally chanced his arm at English football after 14 years in management.
He arrived on the south coast of England in the summer of 2014 to somewhat of a fire sale – club captain Adam Lallana joined Rickie Lambert, Dejan Lovren, Luke Shaw and Callum Chambers in leaving Southampton for other Premier League clubs. The following season also saw two more important first team players leave the club in Nathaniel Clyne and Morgan Schneiderlin.
Southampton’s Europa League-qualifying performances in those seasons are almost certainly what has caught the eye in Everton’s pursuit for a new boss. With key players, such as Romelu Lukaku and John Stones, strongly linked with moves away from Everton, a squad rebuild is very much on the cards this summer.
It appears that for new leading shareholder Farhad Moshiri and Bill Kenwright, Ronald Koeman was very much the man for the job.