Rafael Benitez breaks Lucas Digne silence and why a January Everton departure looks a real possibility
A pair of updates surrounding the delicate situation of Everton defender Lucas Digne have come to the fore on Sunday evening.
‘Will have a chance’
French international Digne, of course, has seen his name take its place front and centre in the headlines on the blue half of Merseyside over the course of the last week.
This comes after a confirmed falling out with manager Rafael Benitez ultimately resulted in the stopper being dropped from Everton’s squad to face Arsenal on Monday.
Understand Lucas Digne was available to play against Arsenal. #EFC full back left out after disagreement with Benitezhttps://t.co/SwVlbGHvj8
— Patrick Boyland (@Paddy_Boyland) December 8, 2021
Attentions, in turn, swiftly turned towards this evening, and whether or not Digne would be afforded a return to the first-team setup for the Toffees’ Premier League clash with Crystal Palace.
In the end, such a development was not forthcoming, with Rafael Benitez, as a result, having inevitably been drawn on the situation ahead of kick-off at Selhurst Park.
And the Spaniard went on to hint that, despite his omission on Sunday, Digne could yet be in line for an imminent recall:
🗣”He will have a chance in the next game if he continues training in the same way.”
Rafa Benitez gives hope to Lucas Digne starting for Everton soon pic.twitter.com/RncKdUsp4K
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) December 12, 2021
Digne wants out?
If the ensuing word spreading across social media is anything to go by, however, then the damage, in Digne’s eyes at least, may already have been done.
As per the reliable Patrick Boyland of The Athletic, it is understood that ‘trust has been eroded’ between club and player owing to their recent fallout.
In turn, a reconciliation over the coming weeks may prove a bridge too far for Digne, with the ‘likeliest option’ that the former Barcelona man will seek out an imminent departure from Goodison Park, potentially as early as January:
Rafa Benitez has again chosen not to include Lucas Digne in #EFC‘s matchday squad for the game against #CPFC @Paddy_Boyland explained the pair’s fractious relationship – is there any way back for the Frenchman?
➡️ https://t.co/vhM0sL4ehJ pic.twitter.com/tVdNKo0ptL
— The Athletic UK (@TheAthleticUK) December 12, 2021
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