Premier League

Liverpool game may have influenced 'joke' Digne red card, fumes Ancelotti

Everton suffered their first defeat of the season at the hands of Southampton, leaving their manager hugely frustrated

6:35pm on Sunday 25th October 2020
By
Chris Myson

Carlo Ancelotti was furious at the red card shown to Lucas Digne as Premier League leaders Everton suffered their first defeat of the season at Southampton.

The Everton boss suggested the fallout from last week's controversial Merseyside derby against Liverpool may have played a part in referee Kevin Friend's decision to send off his star left-back.

Digne made heavy contact into the back of Kyle Walker-Peters' ankle with 18 minutes to go in the 2-0 loss, resulting in a straight red card, a decision the France international protested.

Ancelotti felt Digne should have been shown a yellow at most for an unintentional challenge and queried whether negative publicity after the Liverpool game had proven to be a factor.

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Everton came in for criticism following the derby after goalkeeper Jordan Pickford's challenge caused a serious injury to Virgil van Dijk, while striker Richarlison saw red for a foul on Thiago Alcantara.

"The red card was a joke," Ancelotti said about the Digne incident to Sky Sports. "It was not intentional, for sure it was not violent conduct.

"Maybe it could be a yellow. Maybe all the rumours all this week against Pickford and against Richarlison affected the decision and if it's like this it's not right - it's not fair. We will appeal, for sure."

The red card ended Everton's hopes of a comeback, but defeat was already looking likely after goals from James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams in the first half, both of which were set up by Danny Ings.

James Ward-Prowse
M (C) - Southampton - 25 yrs
MAN OF THE MATCH
90'
8.7
Oct 25, 2020
90Minutes played
1Goals
80Passes
74Passes completed
97Touches
7Ball recovered
6Crosses
3Tackles won

Everton remain top of the Premier League table on goal difference ahead of champions Liverpool and Ancelotti wants Sunday's defeat to serve as a wake-up call.

"I told the players winter is coming and we will have to react," the Italian added. "We tried to get back into the game, we had some good control after half-time.

"But we didn't play well, Southampton played better than us and they deserved to win. Sometimes you are not at your best.

"It was not a good performance. It came after a really good run for us - now we have to look forward with the same spirit and belief. It happens."

Everton's first chance to bounce back will come when they play away to Newcastle United next week.

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