Liverpool’s dominance in Merseyside derby has been pretty comprehensible in recent years. They were the team in-form and favorites to win at Anfield. However, the Toffees have also regained some momentum since Sam Allardyce took over and the Blue half of Merseyside managed to clinch a dramatic draw defying the odds on a snowy Sunday afternoon.
Liverpool were clearly the better side throughout the game and although Klopp made some questionable alterations in his side ( dropping both Coutinho and Firmino), they kept on pressing hard to break the deadlock from the very beginning. But somehow they failed to create enough opportunities until Mohamed Salah stepped up and scored another incredible solo goal to earn the Reds a massive lead. The game soon opened up but Sadio Mane made a howler following his selfish play as he didn’t pass the ball to either of his three teammates who could have doubled the lead with a simple finish. Mane opted to take a chance by himself and failed to keep it on target. The first-half ended 1-0 in favor of the hosts.
But the second half came up with the biggest drama when referee Craig Pawson awarded Everton a penalty for Dejan Lovren’s foul on Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Although the Croatian could have avoided the incident, it was a soft touch and the referee did a favor to the visitors in such a high-voltage encounter. Wayne Rooney stepped up and scored his first Merseyside derby goal to equalize late in the game.
Klopp brought in both Firmino and Coutinho and taking off Salah when the team was leading 1-0 didn’t make any sense either. Also, bringing on Danny Ings after 19 long months since his last Premier League appearance was a massive gamble that didn’t pay off. A win would have taken the Reds to the third spot but they failed to capitalize on Arsenal and Chelsea’s point loss and clung on to the fourth spot ahead of their crucial midweek clash against West Bromwich Albion.
Liverpool vs Everton Lineups:
Liverpool: Simon Mignolet, Joe Gomez, Dejan Lovren, Ragnar Klavan, Andrew Robertson, Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Philippe Coutinhom78′), Mohamed Salah ( Roberto Firmino 67′), Sadio Mane, Dominic Solanke (Danny Ings 82′).
Everton: Jordan Pickford, Jonjoe Kenny, Mason Holgate, Ashley Williams, Cuco Martina, Idrissa Gana Gueye, Tom Davies (Morgan Schneiderlin 46′), Wayne Rooney (Phil Jagielka 83′), Gylfi Sigurdsson, Oumar Niasse (Aaron Lennon 46′), Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Liverpool vs Everton Highlights:
Liverpool vs Everton Match Stats:
|Shots (on Target)||23(3)||3(2)|