Everton have confirmed the appointment of former Chelsea midfielder and manager Frank Lampard as their new head coach.
Caretaker boss Duncan Ferguson and former Shanghai SIPG manager Vitor Pereira were also in contention for the role, but Lampard was offered the job on Friday before putting pen to paper on Sunday.
The 43-year-old has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal at Goodison Park, where he replaces Rafa Benitez in the dugout following the Spaniard's sacking earlier in January in the midst of a torrid run of form.
The Toffees have won just once in the league since September despite a strong start to the season, with the final nail in Benitez's coffin arriving in the form of a poor 2-1 defeat to lowly Norwich on 15 January.
That awful streak means Everton have plummeted to 16th in the Premier League table, just four points above the relegation zone - although they do have games in hand on Norwich and Newcastle directly beneath them.
Lampard - who has been out of work for almost exactly a year - will be charged with correcting Everton's nosedive before it's too late. The club have confirmed that Chelsea assistant Joe Edwards will be joining Lampard at Goodison, although 90min understands Jody Morris - who served as his assistant at Chelsea and Derby - will not.
“It is a huge honour for me to represent and manage a club the size and tradition of Everton Football Club," Lampard said. "I’m very hungry to get started. After speaking to the owner, Chairman and the Board, I very much felt their passion and ambition. I hope they felt my ambition and how hard I want to work to bring it together.
“You can feel the passion Everton fans have for their club. That will be hugely important. As a team – the competitive level that the Premier League brings and the position we are in the table – we certainly need that. It’s a two-way thing. I think Everton is a unique club in that you can really understand what the fans want to see. The first thing they want is fight and desire and that must always be our baseline.
“My first message to the players will be that we have to do this together. We’ll try to do our job and I know the fans will be there backing us.”