Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has explained that he can unlock more offensive ability from Richarlison by playing him in a new formation.
Richarlison, who earns £90,000-a-week (Spotrac), has been deployed more centrally in attack during recent matches.
The 23-year-old has scored in his last three consecutive Premier League games as a result.
Ancelotti opted to used a midfield diamond in the weekend’s 1-0 win over Southampton, which allowed a front two of Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison ahead of them.
The Italian manager feels that less defensive responsibility on the latter is releasing the shackles off him.
“His position changed against Southampton. We played with a diamond in midfield and moved Dominic on the right. Richarlison plays centre-left so he’s less involved defensively. He can use more his ability and quality forward,” Ancelotti said in his press conference, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo.
Regular Everton watchers will know that Richarlison operating from the left is effective, as he can be a danger cutting infield, plus the defensive work-rate he shows is superb.
The Merseyside giants will lack his tenacity off the ball if he’s not in a wide role being asked to track back as much, but it’s worth it if he can start scoring regularly like teammate Calvert-Lewin.
He’s shown a real killer instinct around the penalty box in the past few games and he’s someone that aged 23 should only continue to get better over time at Goodison Park.
He’s not been getting the headlines for much of Everton’s season, but he’s now really stepping up.