Rafa Benitez hits back at Everton fans after they turned on him following the club’s seventh league defeat to Crystal Palace… before defending his decision to substitute ‘injured’ Richarlison
- Everton manager Rafa Benitez hit back at the club’s supporters and Richarlison
- Everton fans turned on the manager with anti-Benitez chants at Crystal Palace
- The Toffees slumped to a seventh league defeat in nine games against Palace
- Richarlison also threw a strop when he was substituted in the second half
Rafa Benitez hit back at Everton fans and Richarlison as the problems piled up for the under-fire Spaniard at Crystal Palace.
Everton fans turned on him with anti-Benitez chants referencing his Liverpool past while the Toffees slumped to a seventh league defeat in nine games.
And Benitez also had an unhappy Richarlison to deal with after the Brazilian threw a strop when he was substituted in the second half.
Rafa Benitez hit back at Everton fans after the chanted song referencing his Liverpool past
The visiting fans vented their fury during a limp, error-ridden Everton display with cries of ‘red and white sh***’ aimed at Benitez.
The heat was cranked up on Benitez when he replaced Richarlison with Salomon Rondon but he argued: ‘When you are disappointed that your team is not doing well you can be emotional and react but the reality is this kind of substitution has been right. Rondon came on and was holding the ball, giving us something more and after he scored the goal.
‘We tried to do the best for the team. We can make mistakes but we know the players and how they are and we tried to make the right decisions.’
The fans were furious as the Toffees slumped to a seventh league defeat in nine games against Crystal Palace (above) on the weekend
Benitez has already had a spat with left-back Lucas Digne who was missing once again at Palace.
And he is facing further issues after Richarlison’s open display of dissent. He threw his arms in the air when his number went up and failed to hide his fury as he sat on the bench.
Benitez said: ‘Richarlison has a problem with his calf. We tried to make the substitution at half-time. He said he wanted to try the second half. It was obvious he was not at the level we were expecting.
‘He wasn’t doing much in the second half. And without Dominic Calvert-Lewin we cannot take this risk [of Richarlison aggravating his problem]. It wasn’t helping with the arms [Richarlison looking annoyed].
Benitez also had an unhappy Richarlison to deal with after the Brazilian threw a strop when he was substituted in the second half (above)
Meanwhile, Patrick Vieira said he was very happy with Conor Gallagher’s performance
‘I cannot explain everything all the time. But now you have the explanation and everybody will understand we tried the best for the team.’
Benitez risked angering his players further by admitting they are ‘not amazing in possession’ and slammed them for the mistakes that led to Palace’s goals – two for Conor Gallagher and one for James Tomkins – and helped the hosts on their way to a deserved first win in five league games.
On on-loan England midfielder Gallagher, who took his tally to the season for six, manager Patrick Vieira said: ‘He’s a fantastic player to have. He give everything to the team and he can score goals. To have a midfielder who can score 10-15 goals is important.
‘We were under pressure and it is not easy to perform like that after losing the last three games.’
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