Richarlison's Stunning Debut Provides Memory For Life

by Paul McNamara
@Everton

Richarlison says he will remember his dazzling Everton debut “for the rest of my life”.

The Brazilian attacker marked his first competitive start for the Blues by scoring both his side’s goals in a compelling 2-2 draw at Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Richarlison, who became manager Marco Silva’s first signing when he joined from Watford last month, put the Toffees ahead on 17 minutes when he swooped on a loose ball in the box to poke home from close range.

Midway through the second half, the 21-year-old gathered a neat layoff from Cenk Tosun to break into the box and finish clinically across goalkeeper Rui Patricio.

That strike restored Everton’s lead after Ruben Neves crashed home a free-kick on the stroke of half-time following a challenge from Phil Jagielka on Diogo Jota which saw the Blues skipper dismissed by referee Craig Pawson.

“It is a very happy day for me and I will remember it for the rest of my life,” said Richarlison. “I have to thank my colleagues because we had to run double with one man less after the red card.

“It is a very special day for me. I am happy with the team and very happy also because it is the first time in my career I won man of the match.”

Richarlison could have had an assist, too, when Theo Walcott was unable to get a clean connection on a shot from the forward's cushioned back-post knockdown.

The debutant also won the free-kick in the lead up to his first goal, his direct run tempting defender Matt Doherty into an injudicious challenge. Leighton Baines’ subsequent left-wing delivery caused untold confusion in the box, enabling Richarlison to pounce.

Manager Marco Silva replaced Gylfi Sigurdsson with the accomplished Mason Holgate immediately after Jagielka’s dismissal. There was no stopping Neves’ dead-ball blast, however. And Mexican striker Raul Jimenez was similarly ruthless with a header 11 minutes from time to haul Wolves level for a second time.

Richarlison's industry and ambition impressed throughout a debut which lasted 86 minutes before he was replaced by fellow summer arrival Lucas Digne.

The point Everton gained against a charged-up and strong home side was the least Silva’s men deserved for a fearless display. But the Blues could conceivably have headed back up the M6 celebrating a maximum haul, with substitute Oumar Niasse inches from connecting in front of goal after Seamus Coleman’s late run and cross.

“We worked very hard and I will always give everything I have on the pitch,” said Richarlison. “That is the way I like to play so you can count on my hard work.

“I am used to training and playing at a really intense level. We have to be happy with our effort and look forward to the next match with confidence.”


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