It is indicative of Everton’s overarching ambition for the remainder of this season that they will be frustrated with this.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side recovered from going a goal behind – after Southampton missed a penalty – to score the equaliser before half-time which earned them a draw.
Everton are unbeaten in 10 Premier League games at Goodison Park – eight of those since Ancelotti arrived.
They had to fight to maintain that proud record, defenders throwing themselves in front of shots and Jordan Pickford making a couple of excellent stops.
The goal from Richarlison was a beauty and worthy of making a highlights reel from this season.
Southampton came here after beating Manchester City and had won half their 16 away games this term.
All told, though, Everton wanted more than one point, however hard they worked for their spoils.
They are six points behind Sheffield United in seventh and European qualification is a tall order from here.
We should never be surprised to see Richarlison on the scoresheet.
Still, the Brazilian’s 12th Premier League goal this season came with Everton on the back foot.
For Southampton, the sight of Richarlison’s measured finish hitting the net must have felt like a bruising kick to the guts.
No question about the quality of the goal, though, nor about how much Richarlison enjoyed it after being the recipient of a few questionable challenges.
As at Tottenham on Monday, Richarlison’s opponents had the 23-year-old in their sights.
Jack Stephens and Stuart Armstrong were booked for fouling him. James Ward-Prowse was, perhaps, fortunate not to receive the same punishment – especially with an illegal challenge on Anthony Gordon on his charge sheet.
Richarlison’s own excitement following his goal was dulled when the Everton player was cautioned for a heavy tackle on Che Adams.
Lucas Digne was the architect of Everton’s equaliser.
The left-back looked up from his own half and saw Richarlison dashing between Ryan Bertrand, Southampton’s left-back, and centre-half Jan Bednarek.
Digne’s pass, measuring about 50 yards, was perfect and matched in quality by Richarlison’s first touch, which enabled him to lift a delicious strike beyond goalkeeper Alex McCarthy.
Southampton had the ball in the net after eight minutes but Armstrong had drifted offside when he converted Adams’ touch across goal.
Indeed, the visitors were brimming with movement and imagination.
In Ings, they had a pest of a centre-forward who was at the heart of all his team’s inventive attacking play.
Factor in Ward-Prowse’s dead-ball ability and midfielders routinely venturing into their opponents’ penalty box and Ralph Hasenhuttl’s team are a tough proposition for anybody.
Manchester City, beaten by the south coast team on Sunday, would vouch for that.
The 31st-minute goal which gave Southampton the lead here owed itself to good fortune and Ings’ improvisation in equal measure.
Armstrong scuffed a shot but Ings was alert to drag the ball away from Pickford with his right boot and apply the finish with his left.
Digne was wide with a 15th-minute free-kick for Everton – and the Frenchman’s fingerprints were all over the hosts’ best chance before Richarlison struck.
He flew down the left side to receive a pass from the excellent Gordon and hang a cross which Richarlison helped on for Alex Iwobi.
McCarthy stood tall and repelled Iwobi’s blast at his near post.
Pickford earned his corn in a period shortly after the 25-minute mark.
Until now, Everton’s centre-halves had thwarted Southampton, Michael Keane and Yerry Mina blocking from Ward-Prowse and Adams respectively.
Pickford tipped over a dipping Ward-Prowse free-kick and from the resultant corner touched Ings’ header onto the bar.
Southampton were irrepressible now. Armstrong touched off to Ward-Prowse in the box and, feeling contact from Andre Gomes, the midfielder crumpled to the turf.
Nobody expected Ward-Prowse to miss from the spot.
But he did, whipping his penalty off the top of Pickford’s bar.
Pickford was equal to an Adams strike soon after the break – Everton now with Djibril Sidibe on for Iwobi after the injured Gomes replaced by Gyfli Sigurdsson four minutes before the break – and a Ward-Prowse free-kick deflected behind off the wall.
Everton, though, were encouraged by the joy they’d found from Richarlison’s escape beyond Southampton’s backline.
Gordon, for the second time in the game, was inches from connecting with Calvert-Lewin’s forward run.
When Tom Davies dropped a ball over the top for Calvert-Lewin the striker failed to control, with McCarthy in no man’s land.
The quick ball forward wasn’t all Everton had up their sleeves.
Gifted possession by Ward-Prowse, Richarlison left Stephens behind and had reached the edge of the penalty box when he was downed by Bednarek.
The Polish defender was booked – a decision backed up by the VAR who decided Bednarek’s intervention didn’t merit a red card.
Digne slammed the free-kick into the wall and Sigurdsson did likewise with the rebound.
Sidibe, finally, forced McCarthy to save down to his left.
Ancelotti swapped Moise Kean for Dominic Calvert-Lewin and took off Gordon for Bernard in an attempt to reintroduce some urgency into a game losing its rhythm.
Everton were playing fewer than 72 hours after finishing up at Tottenham and Southampton’s energy was sapping, too.
Another effort from Ings clattered into a crowd of bodies and Armstrong miscued after being set up by substitute Shane Long.
Everton wanted more but this point makes it eight from a possible 15 in 18 hectic days, with no let-up imminent – Ancelotti's his team in action at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday lunchtime.
Gordon Answers Carlo’s Intensity Call
Three times in the opening 22 minutes, Anthony Gordon and Lucas Digne stood over dead balls on Everton’s left.
It is a measure of how Gordon is viewed by his teammates that twice Digne deferred to his younger colleague.
Gordon was starting his third Goodison Park game on the run and with each appearance the teenager is comfortable with more responsibility resting on his shoulders.
Carlo Ancelotti brought on the teenager to inject impetus into Everton’s play at Tottenham Hotspur on Monday.
And, against Southampton, Gordon picked up where he left off in the capital.
It is another sign of the Academy graduate’s growing standing that had a challenge from Kyle Walker-Peters ended Gordon’s night, rather than causing the player fleeting discomfort, Everton’s chances of recovering their one-goal deficit would have been harmed.
Gordon talks of playing without fear, so when he runs into traffic on the edge of Southampton’s box, he isn’t deterred.
Soon after, Gordon stepped away from Ryan Bertrand with a gorgeous first touch but overcooked a pass for Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
He mugged Stuart Armstrong to set Everton on the offensive after 15 minutes.
The 19-year-old’s close control and vision enabled him to feed Lucas Digne to create Everton’s clearest opportunity of the opening half – Alex Iwobi’s shot repelled by Alex McCarthy.
Gordon thought he had a case for a penalty after tumbling over with Walker-Peters on his tail but didn’t find a friend in referee Lee Mason.
The versatile forward revealed following his full Merseyside derby debut that he’d discovered the imperative of threading through balls without delay.
He was inches from playing in Calvert-Lewin with a pass rapidly despatched from his own half soon after the restart.
Making way for Bernard late on, Gordon could look back on another display filled with endeavour, speed-of-thought, pace and promise.
Richi Comes Up Trumps
Richarlison is one you’d want with you in the trenches.
Regardless of the state of a game, the South American’s effort is unyielding.
Carlo Ancelotti reckons he’s never had forwards with the energy and appetite to defend of Richarlison and fellow striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Indeed, one of the first instructions Richarlison received from Ancelotti after the Italian’s appointment as boss was to keep a lid on his backtracking.
Ancelotti’s reasoning made sense.
He wants Richarlison close to his opponents’ goal where he can inflict the most damage.
The 23-year-old has been on the end of some rough treatment this week, first at Tottenham and then from a Southampton side intent on limiting Richarlison by fair means or foul.
Being singled out like this is testament to the fear Richarlison’s speed and power and skill instil in opponents.
This season he has become more ruthless.
Like the goalkeeper who can pull off a fabulous stop after being unemployed for most of a game, Richarlison doesn’t need chance after chance to get his eye in.
He’d not had a look in when Lucas Digne arrowed a pass onto his right boot two minutes before half-time.
Richarlison would have known the opportunity to completely alter the complexion of this game was at his right foot.
Everton had created little and there was no hint he would be feasting on openings any time soon.
There was no sign of pressure, though, as he gathered the ball in on his right foot before gleefully dispatching it past Alex McCarthy.
Richarlison was Everton’s joint-top Premier League scorer with 13 last season.
He’s one behind Calvert-Lewin this time – and the duo have combined for 14 from 14 starts together under Ancelotti’s management.
Important Night For Mina
The injury sustained by Mason Holgate at Tottenham Hotspur on Monday opened the door for Yerry Mina’s return to Everton’s team.
Mina was imperious after his unexpected introduction in north London, adding to a valuable cameo when coming on to resist Leicester City pressure last week.
Even so, the combined 76 minutes Mina had in those games was his lot post-lockdown until playing from the beginning here.
The Colombian last started for Everton 137 days ago, in a game at Arsenal on 23 February.
Mina is one of those whose body and mind would have been grateful for a rest.
His past two summers have been swallowed up by tournament football – last year’s Copa America following the 2018 Russian World Cup – and Mina played in the South American competition in 2016, too.
Still, nigh-on 20 weeks is an awfully long time for a 25-year-old to go without competitive action.
The film of sweat covering Mina’s forehead as he prepared to enter the field reflected a player keen to get going and the game was only minutes old when he leapt to power clear a Ryan Bertrand corner.
Those high balls are Mina’s bread and butter.
He wouldn’t choose to play against Danny Ings every week, that’s for sure.
The Southampton striker, with his low centre of gravity and canny movement, is hard to get to grips with.
With Ings’ more imposing partner Che Adams flushed with confidence following his exceptional winning goal against Manchester City four days ago, this represented a fierce examination for Mina
and Michael Keane.
Mina was on guard to block from Adams in the box and stuck a toe in ahead of Ings to prevent the forward escaping on goal.
There was a composed tackle to baulk Stuart Armstrong one-on-one close to Everton’s goal in the second half.
The game primarily unfolded in front of the South American after the break and he’d have been pleased about that.
A Mina diving header emphatically cleared Everton's lines towards the end.
He made a match-high six clearances and won possession for his team seven times.
There were two blocks as well and only Lucas Digne among Everton's players had more than Mina's 61 touches.
This was a valuable 90 minutes for Mina and he can be very satisfied with his contribution.