Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti usually makes it a point to not get mad at his players during and after games, and certainly doesn’t yell and scream about them to the media after either.
The frustrating defeat to Newcastle yesterday certainly tested his reserves of patience and he might have come this close to breaking that cardinal rule. Yet the veteran manager did not mince his words after the final whistle.
“We were lazy, we were slow and we were not focused. We gave away 12 corners to them, a lot of throw-ins. We didn’t win duels, second balls...this is the game.
“You can only show quality if you are there in this game because the game is about winning duels, second balls, avoiding corners, avoiding throw-ins. We were not on the pitch today.”
When asked what he said to his players after the game, Ancelotti reiterated his message.
“Exactly the same. There is no secret.”
Was he angry after the poor performance saw the Blues lose ground in the race at the top of the table?
“Angry? No. I am disappointed. I don’t want to forget what we did. We had a good run and I hope it will only be one game like this.
“I hope that in the next game on Wednesday we are going to show spirit and attitude as we did in the past. We are in a good position in the table for the spirit, not the quality. We can show our quality only if the spirit is there.”
Immediately after the game speaking to BT Sport, Ancelotti commended Newcastle for outplaying his side.
“They showed more concentration, more motivation and these were the weapons we had when we won games. Spirit, motivation, concentration and ambition.
“We forgot all of this today at home, that was the reason. It wasn’t tactical or physical reasons. It was a mental reason. The psychological aspect of our performance. I am surprised...we had a good run until now.”
Bernard and Cenk Tosun appeared to be held out of the squad today with impending transfers likely to happen before the close of the window on Monday.
“They are in talks in this moment. I am not involved in this as I was involved in the game.
“Maybe in the next days or hours, they can find a solution to leave. They will speak over the next days.”
Were the Blues looking to bring any players in before the deadline?
“We have some days. We are looking forward, but we are not desperate.”