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Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti blasts 'joke' decision to send off Lucas Digne against Southampton

Carlo Ancelotti remarkably suggested Lucas Digne was red carded as punishment after the significant reaction to Jordan Pickford's non-sending off in last week's Merseyside derby.

The Everton manager confirmed the club would appeal the red for Digne, who clumsily fouled Kyle Walker-Peters from behind in the 72nd minute at St Mary's Stadium.

Speaking afterwards on Sky Sports, Ancelotti claimed: 'The red card was a joke. It was not intentional. Maybe it could be a yellow but for sure it was not violent conduct.

Carlo Ancelotti confirmed Everton will appeal Lucas Digne's red card against Southampton

Digne was sent off in Everton's 2-0 loss  after a clumsy tackle on Kyle Walker-Peters

'They could check better. Maybe all the rumours all week against Pickford, against Richarlison, affected the decision and if it is like this, it's not right, it's not fair. We will appeal, for sure.

'He did not have the intention to hurt the player, or to use violent conduct. It was not the right decision. To lose Digne for three games is too much. We didn't complain about Richarlison. But here, we have to appeal, because this was not the right decision.'

On the defeat itself, Ancelotti added: 'We didn't play well. Southampton were better than us and they deserved to win. We don't have to be too disappointed. We are still at the top of the table, which is an unbelievable achievement for us. We have to try to stay there.'

Ancelotti suggested he was sent off as a punishment for Jordan Pickford's escape last time

Pickford escaped a red card in last weekend's Merseyside derby for a reckless challenge on Virgil van Dijk

James Rodriguez looked like he wanted to come off towards the end, but Ancelotti had used all three of his substitutes. The Colombian's fitness will be checked in the coming days.

This 2-0 victory for Southampton came on the anniversary of their 9-0 defeat by Leicester City, and Hasenhuttl claimed he did not speak about that loss once with his players.

'We did not talk once this week about losing 9-0,' he said. 'That is a topic for you guys, but it was important what we did after that defeat. Now we don't even think about it any more. I don't care.'

Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse added: 'They came here unbeaten. We were aggressive. We believe in what we are doing and we have the quality to go and score goals. This gives us a lot of confidence, we weren't really troubled.'

Ancelotti also confirmed James Rodriguez's fitness will be checked in the coming days

Hasenhuttl said he did not speak about last year's 9-0 loss to Leicester once with his players

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