Frank Lampard has rejected Richarlison’s claims that Everton lack ambition ahead of their reunion on Saturday.
Richarlison quit Everton to join Tottenham for £60million in the summer and questioned the ambition of his former club in a recent interview.
Aftermath of his sale, Richarlison told Four Four Two of his passion for Everton but also spoke of what he perceived as a lack of ambition. He said: “It’s always a tough call when you have such strong connections with your club, and that was definitely the case for me. I was happy at Everton and I’m grateful for everything I learned there. It’s a big club with a lot of history.”
However, perhaps they’re suffering with a lack of ambition nowadays. You know, that eagerness to win matches and trophies. I spent four years there and I could see there was still a very long way to go to achieve big things. I felt it was the right time to move on, and the club also had to make some money. It was a good deal for everyone involved. I’m delighted with this new challenge.”
Speaking ahead of Everton’s trip to Spurs on Saturday, Lampard refused to criticise the Brazil striker and respects him for playing a leading role in last season’s survival act when he was their top scorer with 10 goals.
But he insists Everton do want to progress, claiming he would not have come to Goodison Park if he felt the club lacked ambition.
“I love Richy,” said Lampard. “Every club is relative, this club has spent a lot of money over the last five, six, seven years, so ambition can be measured in different ways. The history of this club, the First Division titles we have won, the FA Cups we have won, all those things come into the conversation.
“If you’re talking about the here and now, I’m certainly ambitious. I wouldn’t be here if I wasn’t. I’m trying to build something. It’s clear to see Tottenham are in the Champions League and we’re not. In simple terms, that’s it. I think that was probably his point and when you get asked, those things can be translated in different ways.
“I think it’s a non-important question and answer, it’s done. We all wish Richy well. It’s a nice situation for a player to leave a good with a good feeling. He left with dignity, he left with his head held high with his team-mates, myself, the fans, the club. He gave everything for this club.
“The fans respected the work ethic and quality he brought here, his team-mates respected that. He moves on and we certainly move on.”
Frank Lampard’s side have been slowly building momentum after a challenging start to the season, but defeat to the Red Devils leaves them in 12th place in the table.