Everton forward Richarlison has detailed how Thiago Alcantara ignored his private Instagram apology following his full-blooded challenge on the Liverpool midfielder in the first Merseyside derby of the season. The Spaniard was making his first Premier League start for the Reds when he felt the full force of Richarlison’s challenge in the closing stages of the 2-2 draw at Goodison Park in October.
The Brazilian was shown a straight red by referee Michael Oliver, who did not hesitate to reach straight for his pocket.
The £20million managed to finish the game but went straight to a local hospital for a scan on his knee.
Despite there being no serious damage, Thiago did not feature again until December when he returned to action for Liverpool in the 0-0 draw at Newcastle.
Oliver and his team failed to escape the controversy though as the officials received a fierce backlash for failing to send off Jordan Pickford for his challenge that ended Virgil van Dijk’s season.
“Then I went on Instagram to apologise and such. He only saw it. I said ‘I’m going to delete this message too, since he doesn’t want to reply’.
“Then I went there and deleted it. He didn’t answer, no.”
It was Richarlison who would have the last laugh though, as he scored to help Everton secure their first Premier League win at Anfield in 22 years in February.
The 23-year-old has now admitted that he refused to look at Thiago during the encounter and the feeling was reciprocated by his opponent.
“Then there was the derby now, at their home, he didn’t look at my face, I didn’t look at him, either,” he added. “The game goes on. He ignored the pigeon.”
Richarlison’s current Everton deal is due to run until the summer of 2024 after he signed a bumper extension just 16 months after arriving from Watford.
Carlo Ancelotti is confident he can keep the forward, despite Richarlison’s desire to play regular Champions League, something he has previously made public.
“I try to talk to him all the time, everyday, but the communication is not so good, I have to say, I need an interpreter, maybe I told him these kinds of things,” Ancelotti said with laughter.
“But I don’t know how long his contract is, honestly, but Richarlison he will stay here as long as I stay, this is for sure.”
He later added: “I like him as a player. And if he doesn’t like me as a manager, it doesn’t matter, he will stay here!”