Ancelotti no killjoy as Everton and rivals under Covid pressure

Date published: Monday 11th January 2021 9:13 - Neil Foster

Carlo Ancelotti Everton

Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti insists his players will continue to celebrate goals with each other until the Premier League orders them to stop.

There has been increased scrutiny placed on football in the light of increasing rates of Covid-19 infection across the country.

Clubs have been told to strengthen protocols within stadia and training grounds. However, there have still been questions raised after scenes in the FA Cup over the weekend.

Mass teams celebrations on the field and in dressing rooms were witnessed amid calls for a break in the season. Ancelotti says they are doing everything by the book and there was nothing to prevent his players enjoying scoring goals.

“Honestly, there is no rule that says you are not allowed to celebrate,” he said. “We are really strict to follow the rules that the Premier League have put in place, to follow the protocols, and if the Premier League say you don’t have to celebrate, you don’t have to hug, we’re not going to celebrate.”

With his tongue firmly in his cheek, the Italian tactician suggested another way to deal with the issue.

“Or we don’t score goals and that would be better, no? If you don’t score a goal, you don’t have to celebrate,” he added.

No laughing matter

Ancelotti may not be laughing so much at Wolves on Tuesday as he is without leading scorer Dominic Calvert-Lewin. The 23-year-old England man is the club’s leading scorer by some distance, with 14 in all competitions.

But he has a hamstring problem that has ruled him out of the trip to Molineux. Fellow forward Richarlison will also have to prove his fitness in training.

That leaves Ancelotti the prospect of having to again play Cenk Tosun. The Turkey international scored his first goal for the club since November 2019 against Rotherham on Saturday.

James Rodriguez is the club’s second-highest Premier League scorer with just three with Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson scoring twice. Two centre-backs, Michael Keane and Yerry Mina (both two), have outscored every other player.

James Rodriguez, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison

Ancelotti is already looking at ways to cope without Calvert-Lewin in the ranks.

“Without an important player like Dominic we have to be able to replace him in a different way,” he added. “We have to adapt to this. “For sure we will be less dangerous on crosses, but maybe we can be more dangerous with the final pass.”


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