Back in the last-chance saloon: Richarlison and Everton beat the odds again | Jonathan Liew

Brazil forward knows all about last chances and his winner against Chelsea was proof of his deep reserves of spirit It was the last trial. The last chance. After countless rebuffs and rejections, a 12-hour bus journey to Belo Horizonte for an open training session with América’s under-17 side awaited him. If he failed to make the grade at the Brazilian club then not only would he have no real future in football, but he also had no way of getting home. A one-way ticket was all Richarlison de Andrade could afford. No safety net. No second chances.Perhaps in a parallel timeline, Richarlison does not impress the América scouts that morning. Perhaps he turns an ankle and is forced to limp to the sidelines, dejected and distraught. Perhaps he hitches a lift back to his home town of Nova Venécia, just off the eastern seaboard of Brazil, and goes back to selling sweets from a cart. Perhaps like many of his hometown friends, he ends up running drugs, in prison or in the ground.