Everton news: Jamie Carragher notes Carlo Ancelotti's tactical tweak

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Saturday night may prove to be a defining moment for Everton. 

Finally over their Anfield hoodoo, beating city rivals Liverpool could be the inspiration Carlo Ancelotti’s side need to revitalise their push to get into the top four. Should the Italian lead The Toffees into the Champions League, he’d surely write himself into the club’s folklore. 

Picking apart the victory on Sky Sports last night, pundit Jamie Carragher pointed out an interesting tactical tweak from an Everton perspective. 

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Indeed, the position of James Rodriguez is what piqued Carragher’s interest on Monday Night Football.

With the Colombian deployed alongside Richarlison in a more forward position to absolve him of defensive duties, the former Real Madrid man was able to thread an assist through to the Brazilian in the opening three minutes. 

That kind of switch, moving him in from the right flank position he played in during October’s Merseyside derby at Goodison Park, impressed Carragher who thought it gave Everton more solidity. 

“In the first derby, Liverpool scored after two or three minutes with Mane, because they exposed Rodriguez, who at times can leave his right-back really exposed,” he said

“So he didn’t do that in this game, he played off the front – and he’s massively involved in the first goal. He gets in between the lines. When he gets on the ball in these positions, it’s, ‘can he deliver?’

“And in that position, with that pass on to Richarlison, there’s very few who can deliver that pass better than James Rodriguez.

“Tactically, they got that right playing him in a 10 position, because he does what he’s in the team for, to deliver that pass – and Everton get off to a great start.”

GIVEMESPORT’s Jonathan Gorrie says… 

It’s interesting to hear Ancelotti’s tactics picked apart and praised. 

While that might sound strange given his glittering career in management, there have been times the Italian has been looked at as a ‘Galactico whisperer’ and not someone noted for his sharp tactical prowess. 

While that might be simplifying matters somewhat, there were reports of Bayern Munich players organising their own training sessions during his spell there as they were not happy with Ancelotti’s level of intensity. 

So, to see him seemingly reinvent himself and rely on out-smarting an opposition coach rather than relying on having a squad of world class players only reaffirms his status as a top manager and vindicates Everton’s decision to pay him an apparent £11.5m a year. 

Though Ancelotti has little to prove after everything he has won, seeing this side to him for arguably the first time in years is fascinating. 

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