By Kevin Phillips

2nd Jul, 2021 | 5:00pm

Phillips tips Benitez to convince two Everton stars to stay after Rodriguez-agent claims

Kevin Phillips insists Rafael Benitez can convince James Rodriguez and Allan to stay at Everton this summer.

The Sunderland legend, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claims if Benitez can’t convince the pair to stay, no one can.

The Toffees confirmed on 30th June that Benitez, 61, has become their new manager on a three-year deal.

As reported by the Daily Mail (June 23rd), Rodriguez’s agent, Jorge Mendes, has offered the playmaker to several European clubs.

Rodriguez and Allan both joined Everton last summer and had previously worked under Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid and Napoli respectively.

After joining the Blues, Rodriguez admitted “one of the big reasons [I signed] was the presence” of Ancelotti. [Everton]

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Allan also cited “Professor Ancelotti” as a major factor in his decision to move to Goodison Park. [Everton]

Following Ancelotti departure, questions have been raised over the future’s of the pair.

Phillips insists Benitez can convince Rodriguez and Allan to stay due to the respect he commands as a manager.

“I think he can get them to stay, he commands that respect,” Phillips told Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs.

“It’s whether his football style and philosophy is the same as Ancelotti’s.

“The players can’t argue with what he’s done in football. Those players have that respect for him.

“He’s had the shortest honeymoon period ever. He needs to hit the ground running.

“To do that, he needs to keep hold of his quality players, Rodriguez and Allan are those players.

“If he can’t convince them to stay, then blimey, I don’t know who can.”

Rodriguez, 29, made 23 appearances during his debut Premier League campaign.

Allan, 30, made 24 top flight appearances as both players suffered with injury issues.

In other news, Tottenham ready for Everton bidding war as priority signing revealed.