Carlo Ancelotti thanked Richarlison for “finding the right solution”, as Everton resisted a Crystal Palace fightback to secure a valuable 3-1 victory at Goodison Park and extend the Blues' unbeaten run to a fifth match.
Bernard’s first-half goal had been cancelled out by Christian Benteke shortly after the restart when Richarlison intervened for the decisive say.
The Brazilian reacted quickest to a Dominic Calvert-Lewin flick on halfway to dribble forwards and, following a piece of mesmerising footwork to outfox Gary Cahill, thrash a right-footed strike across Vicente Guaita.
Visiting goalkeeper Guaita was beaten again with two minutes remaining, Calvert-Lewin converting after Richarlison’s header from a Lucas Digne corner rebounded off the bar.
Everton have collected 17 points from eight games since Ancelotti’s appointment in December and the manager knew where to direct a slice of the credit for his team’s latest success.
“In the hardest moment – like against Watford [last week’s 3-2 win from 2-0 down] – we were able to find the right solution,” Ancelotti told evertontv.
“Before [Everton’s second] goal we were having problems covering Crystal Palace’s attacking options.
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ANCELOTTI ON 'FANTASTIC' RICHARLISON AFTER PALACE WIN
“We have to thank Richarlison because he scored a fantastic goal on the counter-attack.
“That was the key point and, after, our control of the game was good.
“It was an outstanding counter-attack, he is a fantastic player, really young and really important for us.
“It was an outstanding goal.
“Richarlison can also play on the left but we don’t have to give him a lot of defensive work.
“He has to be fresh when we have the ball, he can play right and left, but without thinking too much about defensive work.”
Bernard swept in a superbly-executed strike from Theo Walcott’s inviting 18th-minute cross to give the scoreline a look which reflected the direction of the game.
Palace steadily crept back into the contest, though, and Benteke levelled after being released in the box by a terrific pass from Wilfried Zaha.
The visitors had all the momentum for the following seven minutes and hit the woodwork for the second time – Patrick van Aanholt struck a post early in the game – when a corner was directed against the bar.
Richarlison’s strike completely changed the mood and Everton had opportunities to add to their tally before Calvert-Lewin’s 11th goal of the season killed off Roy Hodgson’s side.
Ancelotti admitted the nature of Everton’s win at Watford last week – when the Blues were reduced to 10 men with the scores locked at 2-2 – helped them navigate their tough period against Palace.
The Italian nevertheless reckons his side, which is one point behind fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, has plenty more scope for improvement.
“It is true, the spirit we had against Watford helped us stay in this game,” added Ancelotti, who also revealed Walcott will on Sunday have a precautionary scan on the knee problem which forced the winger off midway through the opening half.
“When Crystal Palace equalised, we had serious difficulties but after that we had control and won three very important points.
“Our overall performance? Honestly, I was not so happy.
“It was an important result to climb the table but we can do better.
“Strikers scoring goals is important, they need the support from the other players – in some parts of the game we did well and in others we can do better.
“But I have to be happy about the run in this time [since Ancelotti joined]. The players, the Club, everyone, did fantastic work.
“We have a possibility to fight for the Europa League and this is our target.”