Alan Stubbs has made a heartfelt plea for Everton owner Farhad Moshiri to sell the club, admitting the Toffees are heading for relegation.
Everton have picked up just 15 points from 18 Premier League games this season and find themselves in 18th place and without a win since October.
Boss Frank Lampard has been unable to find a way to break the Toffees’ barren run of form, culminating in Tuesday night’s 4-1 mauling at home to Brighton.
It was an embarrassing night for the Merseyside club, as boos rang out from the stands around Goodison Park.
Despite the mounting pressure on Lampard, Stubbs believes the problems at Goodison Park run far deeper than the Chelsea legend’s inability to edge the club away from the drop zone.
“First and foremost, the team on the pitch right now are not performing – Frank Lampard is under pressure and there’s no doubt about that, but it isn’t all Lampard’s fault,” Stubbs exclusively told talkSPORT Breakfast.
“The board have got to take a huge amount of responsibility for what’s going on.
“I’m speaking from the heart here as an Everton fan, not an Everton player, as an Everton fan: Mr Moshiri, sell up. Simple as that.
Gianluca Vialli: Ex-Chelsea, Juventus and Italy striker dies aged 58
Ronaldo can live with partner Rodriguez despite Saudi’s strict unmarried couple laws
Man United sign Palace goalkeeper Butland as Ten Hag reveals reason for loan switch
‘The worst character’ – Lyon legend Juninho hits out at Ronaldo’s new coach Garcia
Arsenal urged to forget Mudryk as they already have player ready as alternative
Southampton ‘sinking quicker than Titanic’ under Jones as fans call for new boss to go
“The fans have had enough not just with Mr. Moshiri but with the board that are there now – Bill Kenwright, Denise Barrett-Baxendale.
“From 2016, we all got busy thinking we’ve got the right man [as owner of the club]. He‘s come in and the one thing I can’t fault Mr Moshiri for is that he’s put his money where his mouth is, but he has made some huge mistakes which has led Everton to where they are right now.
“Since Bill came into the club in 2004 when he acquired it, he said he wanted to take this great club to where it belongs. If you’re going to run a successful club you need two qualities – you need to be realistic and you need a plan.
“He hasn’t had a plan, it’s as simple as that.”
Everton have splashed around more than £500million in the transfer market since Moshiri took the reins at Goodison Park but have little to show for their investment, which has now seen the club forced to tighten the purse strings to comply with financial fair play regulations.
But Stubbs has fired shots at the club’s lack of transfer strategy which he views as a scatter gun approach.
He added: “We’ve spent over £500million and the team is no better than before Mr Moshiri spent a penny. How can that happen?
“The problem is that it’s OK having the money, but you need a plan, you need a vision. Everton haven’t.
“They’ve been like a kid going into a sweet shop going, ‘That’s nice, I’ll have one of them’, or with players, ‘He’s had a good season, we’ll buy him’.
“Just look at the signings they’ve made – Gylfi Sigurdsson for £45m, Alex Iwobi for £28m, and Iwobi’s been good by the way over that last 18 months.
“Yerry Mina for £27m, he’s never on the pitch, Cenk Tosun for £27m as a sub. Yannick Bolasie for £25m, Jean-Philippe Gbamin for £25m, never seen him, Moise Kean, never seen him, he was £25m – the list goes on…
“The time has come, we need change.”
Despite his call for change at the club, Stubbs doesn’t believe sacking Lampard would be the right solution in the long-term and believes the 44-year-old should be given time to turn things around.
“When you look at his body language over the last couple of games where he’s had to come out, I think it’s starting to tell on Frank – I actually would like to give him time,” Stubbs explained.
“The fans had really gotten onside with Frank Lampard and he had a good relationship with them. It’s changed, it’s definitely turned. The two losses to Bournemouth [in October], I think was the turning point.
“I didn’t expect us to be in the top-four, I just want to see progression and the only progression we’re making is down the table.
“The biggest change right now is not the manager, it’s the board, because the board are the ones who have made these decisions on the managers.
“Fundamentally something is wrong at the club, so why are we talking about sacking another manager?
“Right now, we will go down and it kills me to say that.
“We celebrated staying up last year – think about that. Last summer should have been the biggest wake up call the club ever had.”
talkSPORT BET OFFER OF THE DAY
Get up to £25 in free bets + 25 free spins* – CLAIM HERE
18+ New customers only. Opt in, bet up to £25 (min. £10) on selected events at odds of 2.00+, in 7 days. Get up to £25 in free bets on selected events + 25 Free Spins on D10S Maradona slot. Bonuses expire in 7 days. Card payments only. T&Cs apply, see below. begambleaware.org | Please gamble responsibly