Report and free match highlights as Richarlison leaves it late to salvage point for relegation-threatened Everton; Toffees now four points clear of relegation zone
Thursday 21 April 2022 10:09, UK
Richarlison's stoppage-time equaliser earned Everton a 1-1 draw with Leicester at Goodison Park and a priceless point in their battle against relegation.
Harvey Barnes's fifth-minute strike looked to have condemned the Toffees to a demoralising third consecutive and eighth home Premier League defeat of the season.
Richarlison squandered two gilt-edged chances to haul Everton back into contention but, after Leicester passed up countless opportunities to wrap up the victory, the Brazilian more than made amends in the second minute of added time when he found the far corner to spark jubilant scenes at a restless Goodison.
The draw sees Everton establish a four-point lead with seven games remaining over relegation rivals Burnley, who host Southampton on Thursday live on Sky Sports, while Leicester stay ninth having seen three points slip away in added time in their previous two league outings.
Everton: Pickford (6), Coleman (6), Godfrey (7), Mina (7), Mykolenko (6), Allan (5), Delph (7), Iwobi (6), Gordon (6), Gray (5), Richarlison (6).
Subs: Rondon (7), Alli (6).
Leicester: Schmeichel (6), Pereira (6), Fofana (7), Evans (7), Castagne (6), Tielemans (7), Mendy (6), Dewsbury-Hall (7), Maddison (7), Barnes (7), Iheanacho (6).
Subs: Amartey (n/a), Daka (5), Lookman (5).
Man of the match: Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall
The rigours of Leicester's domestic and European campaign - which reached the 49-game mark at Goodison - forced Brendan Rodgers to shuffle his pack with a Premier League season-high seven changes, but it didn't show.
Only a last-ditch Seamus Coleman challenge prevented Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall from slotting Leicester ahead inside the opening minute, and it wasn't long before the breakthrough came, with Barnes firing in off the post after Kelechi Iheanacho's blocked shot from James Maddison cutback fell into his path.
Everton should have drawn a line under their lethargic start just after the quarter-hour when Anthony Gordon's whipped cross put an equaliser on a plate for Richarlison, but with the Leicester goal gaping in front of him, the Brazilian somehow shanked wide.
It took until the final throws of the half for Everton to muster another attempt on the Leicester goal, but Demarai Gray curled wide from a well-worked corner routine as the Toffees failed to score a first-half goal for the 22nd time this season.
With almost an hour gone, and Everton having roused themselves after the break, Salomon Rondon's introduction gave the hosts a focal point from who produced their first shot on target in the 68th minute when Kasper Schmeichel saved from Richarlison.
Leicester should have put the game to bed, but Pickford punched his fierce drive clear before two crucial blocks from Fabian Delph prevented the midfielder from doubling the visitors' advantage.
Richarlison missed a header from six yards out, Rondon flashed a header wide and the Everton's chances looked to have faded until the Brazilian finally hit the target to completely alter the mood ahead of a daunting run-in which features games against Liverpool, Chelsea and Leicester again.
Everton manager Frank Lampard: "A late goal that gets you a draw feels a real positive. That is something we want to change. Something we haven't been able to do well enough in my time here is draw games when we are either are not playing as well as we should do, and there have been games recent where are performances were good and we got nothing.
"As long as we stay in games and keep fighting in games then anything is possible. It's a small run but it is the bounce of coming off a good result against Manchester United to get another point on the board. It can be an easy thing to throw at the players that they lack spirit or desire and they certainly don't.
"We are not in a time for pretty patterns and an idea of our philosophy for the next two or three years, the first phase is can we fight or show character to stay in this league and they showed that tonight."
Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers: "I thought performance-wise we were excellent. Once we get into the second half we just need a wee bit more composure in the final third of the pitch to close the game out. At 1-0 you always have to go right to the end and unfortunately just at the end we conceded the goal.
"You think of the great result Everton had here 11 days ago (beating Manchester United); this is our fourth game in that period. The level the players played at was a really high level. Overall, I'm delighted with how we played."
April 24 - Liverpool (a), live on Sky Sports
May 1 - Chelsea (h), live on Sky Sports
May 7 - Leicester (a)
May 10 - Watford (a)
May 15 - Brentford (h)
May 19 - Crystal Palace (h)
May 22 - Arsenal (a)
Everton travel to Liverpool for the Merseyside derby on Super Sunday at 4.30pm - live on Sky Sports Premier League - while Leicester take on Midlands rivals Aston Villa in the Premier League on Saturday at 3pm.