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Ancelotti: Richarlison is back

The Everton manager spoke glowingly about the Brazilian’s performance against Tottenham on Wednesday, in which he scored twice

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League - Goodison Park
Richarlison scored twice on Wednesday against Spurs
Photo by Peter Powell/PA Images via Getty Images

Carlo Ancelotti believes Richarlison is rediscovering his best form after netting a brace in Everton’s 5-4 FA Cup home win over Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday

The Brazilian endured a frustrating first half to this season, and only two of his eight goals this term have come in the Premier League.

But speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday’s visit of struggling Fulham, Ancelotti believes the Everton forward is finding his rhythm again:

“I was really pleased by the performance he showed against Tottenham; I think we can say he’s back.

“He had a lot of problems in the first part of the season, but after the performance against Tottenham, we can say that he is back. We are really pleased for this because, as everyone knows, he’s a really important player for us.”

After an exhausting week comprising a 3-3 draw at Manchester United and Wednesday’s extra-time victory over Spurs, Ancelotti still feels his side can recover properly in time for Sunday’s 7pm GMT kick-off.

The Everton manager also added that André Gomes, James Rodriguez and Joshua King will all be back, having been unavailable against Spurs, and stressed that Fulham’s lowly position does not mean they will provide a stern test:

“We know that every game is really difficult. Fulham are playing really well, in my opinion, with courage and intensity. And after two hours against Tottenham, of course, we are not in the best condition. I think we have enough time to recover properly, but we have to pay attention to this kind of game.

“We have André Gomes, James Rodriguez and Joshua King back, who were not available on Wednesday. We think Allan will also be back in the next week, so I think the team and the squad is ready for the next games.”

Allan is not Everton’s only absentee - fellow midfielder Jean-Philippe Gbamin remains sidelined, while Ancelotti confirmed this game will come too soon for both Jordan Pickford and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Pickford has not played since sustaining a minor rib injury in the 2-0 home defeat to Newcastle on January 30, while Calvert-Lewin was taken off during Wednesday’s game with a suspected hamstring problem.

But Ancelotti believes both should be available again for Wednesday’s game against Manchester City, and believes new arrival Joshua King could help to compensate for Calvert-Lewin’s absence on Sunday:

“Both of them will not be available for the game on Sunday. We are looking for the next game on Wednesday, where we think both of them will be available.

“He [Calvert-Lewin] only has a little, little problem. He can play on Wednesday.

“I think Joshua King can play in that position, and can also play as a winger. Of course, without Calvert-Lewin, it is a strong possibility to put him in the first 11. His physical condition is good and his adaptation to the team is working well.”

Ancelotti also spoke glowingly about Tom Davies, who has improved dramatically of late and started both the United and Spurs games, impressing in each.

The Everton boss was keen to reiterate that, despite playing more than 125 first team games, boyhood Evertonian Davies is still only 22, and still has a great deal of time on his side.

But Ancelotti feels Davies’ affection for Everton and his willingness to learn and better himself will stand him and his team in good stead:

“Tom is doing really well; he’s improved a lot. I think the base of his qualities is that he’s a powerful, dynamic midfielder. Where he has improved is to manage the ball better. Tactically, he’s doing well.

“We don’t have to forget that he’s really young. He’s played as a professional for a long time, but he’s a young player that can improve quickly. He has the desire to improve; he has a strong belonging to this club, and this is helpful for us.”