Everton could be at risk of losing both James Rodriguez and Richarlison in the wake of Carlo Ancelotti’s sudden departure and return to former club Real Madrid, with the Italian an important factor in both players being at Goodison Park.
Everton hired three-time Champions League winner Ancelotti – he also won two more as a player himself – in December 2019 following Marco Silva’s dismissal in the hope of realising their own ambitions of finally getting into Europe’s elite club competition.
Yet just 18 months into the job and off the back of 12th and 10th place finishes, Ancelotti found the lure of heading back to Madrid too hard to ignore, leaving the Toffees rather in the lurch.
Ancelotti had started to build something at Everton and his name alone was a huge appeal. But there is a concern that players either brought to the club or convinced to stay by the revered Italian could become disillusioned now that he has chosen to jump ship.
The Athletic notes that is the growing danger with Rodriguez and Richarlison.
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Ancelotti was almost the sole factor why Rodriguez chose Everton when he was leaving Real Madrid last summer, having played under him for both Real and on loan at Bayern Munich.
It is also said that Richarlison, who had joined Everton in 2018, has taken Ancelotti’s exit badly, coming as a personal blow. By his own admission the player stayed at the club last summer because he was persuaded by the ex-AC Milan and Juventus coach to ‘hold on’.
The Athletic report further adds that others at Everton who have signed new contracts in the last 18 months have been left ‘dismayed’ by the speed of Ancelotti’s exit and the uncertainty it now brings about the club’s future when they had hoped he could attract better players to Goodison.