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Everton boss shortlist down to three

Roberto Martinez remains the leading candidate on a three-man shortlist for the Everton job, ESPN understands.

• Blog: Common sense prevails

Martinez, who met Everton chairman Bill Kenwright on Wednesday, is scheduled to hold a second round of talks on Friday.

Kenwright is also considering Red Bull Salzburg sporting director Ralf Rangnick and Porto coach Vitor Pereira for the post.

Rangnick, 54, who speaks fluent English after studying at the University of Sussex in his 20s, led Schalke to the Champions League semi-finals in 2011.

He stepped down in September that year because of stress before taking up his current role in June 2012.

Pereira, 44, has led Porto to the Portuguese league title in each of his two seasons in charge since stepping up from the assistant manager's position to replace Andre Villas-Boas in 2011.

Kenwright, who is hoping to install a new manager by early next week, is understood to have spoken to both Pereira and Rangnick about the job, but Martinez is the first candidate to be granted a second interview.

The Everton chairman has also interviewed three members of Everton's coaching staff - Alan Stubbs, David Weir and Duncan Ferguson - as well as the departing club captain Phil Neville, who has just ended an eight-year playing stint at Goodison.

Martinez, 39, remains the favourite to replace David Moyes, who is moving to Manchester United following the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson.

The Spaniard led Wigan to the FA Cup for the first time in their history as they beat Manchester City 1-0 in the final at Wembley on May 11.

But he was unable to keep them in the Premier League, with their relegation confirmed three days later by a 4-1 defeat at Arsenal.

Martinez, who moved to Wigan from Swansea in 2009, told chairman Dave Whelan on Tuesday that he wanted to leave the DW Stadium.

Whelan has revealed that he wants £2 million in compensation for the manager, who has 12 months of his Wigan contract to run.

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