Rafael Benitez reminds Frank Lampard that he was doing a better job at Everton | Football

Norwich City v Everton - Premier League

Rafael Benitez was in charge of Everton for just 22 games (Picture: Getty Images)

Rafael Benitez has reminded Everton that he left them in a better position that they are in now, saying that he was not given the time to achieve what he wanted at Goodison Park.

The Spaniard took charge of the Toffees last summer and, despite a good start to their Premier League campaign, he was sacked after just 22 games in charge.

Things had been going pretty badly and a defeat to Norwich City proved to be the final straw for Benitez as he was sacked following that loss at Carrow Road in January.

However, he reckons things were not that bad and were going about as well as could be expected given the lack of investment over the summer and the injuries his team were dealing with.

He certainly does not think that the team would be battling to avoid relegation – as they are now under Frank Lampard – if he was given time to improve matters on the pitch.

‘When we left we were six points behind 10th, with two games in hand, and six points above relegation,’ Benitez told AS.

Watford v Everton - Premier League

Frank Lampard is still fighting to avoid relegation (Picture: Getty Images)

‘It was a bad position for what was expected, but consistent and realistic with the investment and injuries.

‘From there, we talk about patience, trust, but people get nervous, social networks influence and a decision is made.

‘Once we left the club, Everton made five new signings, got all the players back and had a new manager, who had to assume his responsibility. We did well at the beginning, we were a bit unlucky later and we didn’t have time to keep doing things and adjust.

‘We have the experience of having done it in other places, where over time we have improved the structure, as happened to us in Naples.’

Lampard can secure Premier League safety for his side on Thursday night if they can beat Crystal Palace at Goodison Park.

A win would put them four points ahead of Leeds, which would leave the Yorkshire side and Burnley to battle it out to avoid the drop on the final day of the season.

However, anything but a win and the Toffees will be very much involved in the fight against relegation on Sunday.


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