Liverpool 3 - 1 Everton: match report
Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool cantered to victory over rivals Everton, in the 228th Merseyside derby. Prior to the match, Everton had not won at Anfield since for 18 years, and goals from Sadio Mané, Coutinho, and substitute Divock Origi prolonged that barren spell. Young defender Matty Pennington scored for Everton on his derby debut, but an ominously-incisive display from The Reds saw them move up to third place in the Premier League.
Anfield was an emotional setting in the minutes leading up to kick off, as the stadium paid a rousing tribute to club icon Ronnie Moran, who passed away earlier this week. The home team emerged from the starting blocks quickly. Everton's young team, including three derby debutants in Davis, Pennington, and Holgate, were not allowed a moment to settle. A slick finish by Sadio Mané placed Liverpool in the ascendancy after seven minutes, as the Senegalese forward escaped the attention of Ashley Williams to place a left-footed effort in the bottom corner.
Everton looked jaded, shell-shocked. But gradually, they played their way back in to the match. Tom Davies, with rock-star looks and a deft touch, was eye-catching in the midfield. Just before the half hour mark, Jagielka flicked the ball on at the near post. It fell to Pennington, who made no mistake from three yards out.
Pennington's joy was short-lived. Two minutes later, Brazilian trickster Coutinho slipped away from the young defender and curled a delightful shot beyond the paws of Simon Mignolet. It was the standout moment in an ostentatious, irresistible display by Coutinho. Just two days after returning from South America on international duty, he showed no signs of rustiness.
Everton almost opened the second half in ideal fashion, as Ashley Williams got a toe on a Ross Barkley free kick. Yet the Welshman was unable to steer his effort beyond Liverpool's Belgian 'keeper. Mignolet has been much-maligned, but he was impeccable in this victory.
Minutes after Origi replaced Mané, who hobbled off with a buckled knee, the substitute sealed the three points for Liverpool. Mason Holgate, so impressive up to that point on the right hand side, lost possession to Countinho, who slipped in Origi to shoot. Robles misjudged his positioning, the Everton 'keeper was flat-footed as the shot flew in to the centre of the goal. Anfield bellowed; an eruption of relief and joy.
From that point, Liverpool managed the game with relative ease. Koeman altered his formation, matching Liverpool's 4-3-3 in an attempt to create more chances for the anonymous Romelu Lukaku. But it was in vain. With Klopp barking instructions in the April sunshine, his team cantered to a crucial win in the context of the race for Champions League football. With Manchester United and Arsenal nipping at their heels, Liverpool glanced over their shoulder, and ominously strode on.
Liverpool 3 - 1 Everton: second half live
FT | Anthony Taylor signals the end of a thoroughly enjoyable Merseyside derby. Klopp strides on to the pitch, fist pumps aplenty. A commanding win by Liverpool as they consolidate fourth place in the Premier League.
90+4 | Everton have a throw in deep inside their own half, it can't be long now...
Min 90+2 | 'We love you Liverpool, we do', chants Anfield. They'll be dancing on one side of Stanley Park tonight. Everton have possession, but frankly, look blunt.
Min 90+1 | SUB: A defensive change by Klopp, who sends Klavan on in place of Firmino.
Min 90 | Four added minutes.
Min 90 | Admirable game management from Liverpool. They have applied the brakes and retained possession in the last few minutes. The home side exude confidence as they march on to victory in the 228th clash between these two neighbours.
Min 88 | Oooh, Mirallas makes his fresh legs count. The Belgian dances past several tackles and creates space for a shot in the right hand side of the box. The ball was bobbling though, and he sends his shot high, side, and none too handsome.
Min 86 | Spring has sprung at Anfield. The pitch is flooded by April sunshine. Pathetic fallacy for the home side, less so for Everton.
Min 85 | Alexander-Arnold thumps a shot from 25 yards. The shot has plenty of 'welly' behind it, but is straight at Robles, and he parries it in to the ground to take the sting out of it, before collecting it on the bounce.
Min 83 | Liverpool take a corner short and opt to retain possession. The team in red eventually work it back in to the box, via a long diagonal ball towards Milner, but Robles claims. With seven minutes plus stoppages to go, the home side are in possession and look relatively comfortable.
Min 81 | SUB: Koeman makes his final change as Mirallas enters in the place of Calvert-Lewin. The youngster has shown glimpses of talent, but has ultimately struggled to get involved.
Min 79 | Jagielka with an important diving block to prevent Origi having a clear run on goal. Everton are committing numbers forward at every opporunity, and as a result, are leaving them exposed to the potent Liverpool counter attack. Don't rule out a fourth for the home side.
Min 78 | Lovely body-feint from Firmino, who lets the ball run through his legs before he turns past his marker. He's showing no signs of post-international break fatigue.
Min 77 | Big chance for Liverpool to close the match. Emre Can cuts the ball back to Arnold, who stabs it towards the far post from 12 yards, but not with enough 'umph' behind it. Robles flies through the air, rather majestically I must say, and claws it away.
Min 75 | Lucas released Wijnaldum on the left flank, but Liverpool lose the ball and allow Everton to counter attack. Lukaku gallops forward, but Lovren executes a perfect sliding tackle to dispossess him.
Min 73 | SUB: Klopp shuffles his pack. Coutinho leaves the pitch to a well-deserved standing ovation. Alexander-Arnold takes his place.
Min 72 | Milner blocks a Holgate cross with his arm, and the linesman signals for a free kick. Baines will deliver and inswinger from the right. It's headed away but Everton maintain the pressure.
Min 70 | Golden chance for Calvert-Lewin. Baines sweeps a lovely, trademark cross in to the box, and the young striker heads over from six yards. He was unmarked. At this stage of the game, chances like that are too good for Everton to pass up.
Min 68 | Booking for Emre Can has he steams in on Valencia.
Min 67 | Following those changes, the away side have settled in to a 4-3-3 formation, with Barry joining Barkley and Gana in midfield, and Valencia joining Lukaku and Calvert-Lewin in attack. Tactically, the two sides are now lined up in the same way.
Min 66 | SUBS: Two changes for Everton. Valencia for Davies, Barry for Pennington.
Min 64 | Dan Walker comments on Twitter that he has seen more of Daniel Craig (who is in the crowd), than Romelu Lukaku. He makes a valid point, but a significant facet of Lukaku's game is that he can drift in and out of matches, before popping up with a vital contribution. The game has gone stale since Origi's goal, with Liverpool content to slow down proceedings.
Min 63 | Can is down with physios around him. He's stamping his foot in pain, head in his hands. His team-mates look anxious as the stretch-bearers hover on the touchline. He slid in to a 50-50 challenge with Ashley Williams and the Welshman caught his knee.
Min 60 | GOOALLLLL! Origi makes an instant impact in the derby! Holgate loses the ball to Coutinho, who slips in Origi to fire past Robles from 20 yards. The Spanish goalkeeper inexplicably ran forward towards the penalty spot and was caught in no-man's-land, really shoddy positioning.
Min 59 | Excellent, powerful charge from Ross Barkley. He wins the ball in the edge of the Liverpool box and holds off several players before slipping in Holgate on the right. Holgate's cross is blocked, and it's a goal kick. Everton's wing backs are finding a lot of space on the flanks.
Min 57 | SUB: Origi replaces Mané for Liverpool.
Min 56 | The Anfield crowd erupts in a growl as Tom Davies wins a foul in the middle of the park. It's finely-poised at the moment. Ross Barkley unleashes a shot on his left foot from the edge of the box, but it deflects kindly in to Mignolet's arms.
Min 53 | Calvert-Lewin looks to scamper in behind, but Matip muscles the youngster off the ball. Mané is in pain after a coming together with Leighton Baines. The Liverpool man's knee got caught beneath him as he went down. It looked painful, and the physio whizzes his hand around to indicate that he won't be able to continue.
Min 51 | Gana is an invaluable presence in the Everton midfield. Last season, he had almost identical statistics to N'Golo Kante despite playing for a hapless Aston Villa. With better players around him, he is flourishing.
Min 50 | An Everton corner comes to nothing, but the away side have started the second half with intent.
Min 47 | Barkley swings a free kick in from 40 yards out, and Everton players are queuing up at the far post as the Liverpool defence goes kamikazi. Ashley Williams gets a foot to it, but he's stretching too much to generate any power, and Mignolet gratefully claims the ball.
Min 46 | Ronald Koeman is furiously scribbling in his notebook. A penny for the Dutchman's thoughts.
Min 45 | Firmino rolls it back to Lovren from kick off, and off we go! No changes for either side at the break.
Liverpool 2 - 1 Everton: first half live
There has been no caginess in this, the 228th Merseyside derby. Mané slipped an effort in to the bottom corner after seven minutes, before Matty Pennington, the young defender from Warrington, hammered the ball home from close range after Jagielka had flicked on a corner. Yet The Toffees could not hold on. Coutinho, showing no signs of rustiness despite a long journey back from South America on Thursday, curled a deliciously-shaped shot in to the Mignolet's net from 15 yards out.
HT - Anthony Taylor puts his whistle to his lips and the two sides trudge down the tunnel. Lovren, clearly dischuffed by Milner's challenge, is remonstrating with the officials.
Min 45+1 | Everton have had 70% pass accuracy, to Liverpool's 80%. They'll need to tighten up in this respect in the second half.
Min 45 | Undeterred by Klopp's wrath, the Fourth Official holds his board aloft to signal two minutes of additional time.
Min 43 | Klopp launches in to a tirade against the Fourth Official, after Holgate went unpunished for a grapple with Milner that roughly resembled a judo throw. Will he employ the 'Messi exoneration' and insist it was aimed at the air?
Min 41 | "Ooohs" from the crowd as Clyne whips a pacy ball in to the fabled 'corridor of uncertainty'. Robles and the Everton defenders were left flat-footed, but Coutinho could not quite arrive in time. Everton will be eager to reach half time and regroup.
Min 39 | Ross Barkley enters the book, and deservedly so. The ball got away from him and, in stretching to reach it, he stamped on Lovren's standing foot. It didn't look malicious, but was certainly a touch over-zealous.
Min 38 | Koeman will be disappointed with his team's inability to reduce the space available to Liverpool when the home team attack. They've been a little too open, and have been punished by the home side as a result.
Min 36 | Despite his goal, it looks like Pennington's nerves are jangling. He fails to control a basic pass, it slips under his studs and out for a throw in to Liverpool. Meanwhile, Emre Can looks to be in discomfort after Ashley Williams barged in to his back.
Min 34 | Pennington slides inside his own box and hooks the ball away for Liverpool's first corner of the match. Milner floats it in, and Mané is penalised for a foul. Robles will take the Everton free kick, which goes straight through to Mignolet at the other end.
Min 31 | GOAAALLLLLL LIVERPOOL! Coutinho restores the hosts' lead with a sumptuous curling shot from just inside the box. He leaps, and punches the air in celebration. The Brazilian is so agile, so nippy, that it's a thankless task to try and get in his way when he jiggles inside the box. Pennington was the defender who could not block the shot.
Min 29 | GOAALLL! Everton equalise through Merseyside derby debutant Matty Pennington. Jagielka flicked on the corner at the near post, Williams' shot was parried, and Pennington rammed it home from close range before wheeling away, ecstatic.
Min 28 | Davies is at the centre of everything at the moment. He wins a free kick in the centre circle and, from there, Everton force a corner after sterling work by Calvert-Lewin.
Min 26 | The former Wigan player slaps in to the wall. Davies loses the ball and clatters Mane in a desperate attempt to win it back. He is the first man to enter the referee's book.
Min 25 | Free kick to Everton in prime Baines territory. Barkley embarked on a surging run but was scythed down by Emre Can.
Min 22 | A half chance goes begging for Everton. Jagielka, now active with his head at the other end, meets an inswinging corner but sends it deep in to The Kop. He was closely marked, in fairness. Good defending by Liverpool.
Min 20 | Tom Davies looks more Venice Beach than Liverpool. Socks rolled down to his ankles, he shows some neat touches in the centre of the park.
Min 19 | Off the line by Jagielka! A lovely one-two between Can and Coutinho sets the Brazilian free. He cuts on to his right foot and fizzes a shot that Robles can only parry behind him. It was looping in, but Everton's number 6 got his head to it.
Min 18 | Mason Holgate is a lovely player to watch. Like John Stones, he came through the ranks at Barnsley, ostensibly the South Yorkshire conveyor belt for technically adept defenders. He's getting up and down the flank well, too.
Min 15 | Everton have settled down as we pass the 15 minute mark. The 3-5-2 really allows them to make the pitch expansive when in possession. A good chance follows as Baines whips a cross in from the left. It finds Calvert-Lewin at the far post, but he miscontrols and the opportunity slips away. He could have shot first time there.
Min 14 | Baines pokes a ball in to the left channel for Lukaku, who gets a wriggle on, but can't quite get there before Mignolet, his Belgium team-mate. Execution of that ball in behind to Lukaku, from wide positions, will be key to Everton's joy in attack.
Min 12 | The atmosphere is swashbuckling and intense. The crowd have really responded to that goal. It will have settled many nerves. It'll be interesting to see how the young players in the Everton team cope with both the occasion, and Everton's current predicament. Calvert-Lewin has seen little of the ball so far.
Min 10 | Important tackle by Jagielka in his own box. Coutinho looked to be dancing through for a quickfire second, but the Yorkshireman stood up well, watched the ball, and cleared the danger. Liverpool look to be gee'd up by that opener; Everton have barely touched the ball since they dug it out of their own net.
Min 8 | GOOAAALLL! Sadio Mané opens the scoring with a low shot across a despairing Mignolet, it settles right in the bottom corner. Williams tried to jockey the Senegalese striker out to the left, and Pennington also failed to get a block in. It was soft defending, but also well finished.
Min 5 | Can is down in a heap following a late tackle by Ross Barkley and the players are surrounding Anthony Taylor. The referee has a word with both captains and calms the situation. The Evertonian can consider himself lucky to avoid a booking. As always in a derby, a big part of the challenge is channeling emotion.
Min 3 | A long ball from the Everton defence reaches Lukaku on the byline. He uses his mighty frame to great effect, and wins a throw in. A spell of Everton possession leads to nothing. Neither side has quite settled in to the occasion yet.
Min 2 | Clyne puts in an early 'reducer' on Leighton Baines, in the Everton half. No complaints from the Everton stalwart. He's back up and gets the game going again with a free-kick.
Min 1 | We're underway at Anfield as Everton kick the game off.
Liverpool vs Everton: team news
Liverpool XI: Mignolet, Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner, Lucas, Can, Wijnaldum, Mane, Firmino, Coutinho.
Coach: Jurgen Klopp
Everton XI: Robles, Holgate, Williams, Jagielka, Pennington, Baines, Davies, Gana, Barkley, Calvert-Lewin, Lukaku.
Coach: Ronald Koeman
13:29 | Another rendition of 'You'll Never Walk Alone' emerges from the silence. It's an emotional scene, and the peep of the referees whistle to mark the end of the minute is greeted by a coarse roar.
13:28 | The two teams gather in the centre circle to begin a minute of silence in remembrance of Ronnie Moran. A huge display spans The Kop, spelling out 'Bugsy'.
13:27 | "Walk on through the rain", crows the Anfield crowd, as the club's anthem reaches a crescendo. The are plenty of flags aloft in the Kop. A scintillating atmosphere.
13:24 | Tom Watson holds the record for the most Merseyside derby losses as a manager, between 1896 and 1915 the Liverpool boss suffered defeat 21 times at the hands of Everton.
13:20 | Liverpool suffered a minor blow in the transfer market this week. Reported target Mahmoud Dahoud opted to join Borussia Dortmund from Bundesliga rivals 'Gladbach, rather than The Reds.
13:18 | Everton's Tom Davies announced his arrival as an Everton regular with a delightfully subtle chip over Claudio Bravo as The Blues beat Manchester City earlier this year. Put your feet up for five minutes and read this interview with the Liverpudlian.
13:13 | Both teams are warming up on the Anfield turf. Kick off is a smidgen over 15 minutes away.
13:08 | Seamus Coleman is a noteable absentee for the Toffees, following his leg-break in the World Cup qualifier between the Republic of Ireland and Wales. Jurgen Klopp commented in the match programme: "I would like to pass on my regards and best wishes to Seamus Coleman, who due to very unfortunate circumstances is not available to play today", he wrote.
13:04 | Coutinho and Roberto Firmino both start for Liverpool. They only arrived back from international duty in South America a couple of days ago. Their sharpness, or possible lack thereof, could be key to determining whether Liverpool have the incision to break through the Everton defence.
12:58 | That man Matty Pennington impressed on loan at Walsall last season in League One. The Saddlers play in the shadow of the RAC building, just north of Birmingham. There's a joke about recovery in there, somewhere. I'll get my coat.
12:54 | Three Everton players are making their Merseyside derby debuts. Matty Pennington, Tom Davies, and Mason Holgate will enter the breach for the first time. No pressure, gents...
12:49 | It's drizzly in Liverpool. Perfect conditions for some slick, zippy, thigh-rubbing football.
12:46 | Romelu Lukaku will partner and guide Calvert-Lewin in attack. Yet the Belgian may not be at Goodison for much longer. Speculation surrounding his future is rife; with both Real Madrid and Barcelona linked in the last week.
12:42 | Two years ago, Dominic Calvert-Lewin was representing Stalybridge Celtic in the non-league circuit. Today, he starts in attack alongside Romelu Lukaku. The England under 20 player arrived at Goodison last summer from Sheffield United. With Steve Walsh at the helm of recruitment, the club are making a concerted effort to sign young, English talent. The January arrival of Ademola Lookman for Charlton is another facet of this policy.
12:40 | It looks like Ronald Koeman has opted for three at the back, with youngster Matty Pennington slotting alongside Jagielka and Williams. Mason Holgate and Leighton Baines will patrol the flanks. It´ll be interesting to see how Everton's back three copes with Liverpool's fluid front three of Mane, Firmino, and Coutinho.
12:28 | Pressure? What pressure? Klopp was bullish in his pre-match press conference, insisting that "there are no excuses not to deliver". The German sees the match as an opportunity: "It is opportunity not pressure. What I learned is that it helps a lot if you don’t think too much about the pressure in games like this.
12:25 | If Liverpool win today, Jurgen Klopp will become the first manager of the club to win his first three Merseyside derbies.
12:20 | This puts things in perspective... The last time that Everton returned across Stanley Park with three points, Francis Jeffers was still considered a promising youngster. Although, admittedly not too promising on that occasion, wee Franny received a red card back then in 1999.
12:13 | The two teams clashed at Goodison Park just before Christmas, where Sadio Mané scored the only goal of the game. At that point, Everton were fourteen points behind their rivals. An away win this afternoon would narrow that gap to a mere three points.
11:35 | Both sides have faced each other in the Premier League on 49 occasions: Liverpool wins 21, Everton wins 9 and 19 draws.
10:45 | A war of words has broken out between Everton boss Koeman and Ireland national team coach Martin O'Neill relating to Coleman's injury.
10:00 | Ian Rush knows a thing or two about the Merseyside derby. Here's what he had to say ahead of the game.
Good morning and welcome to build-up ahead of our live coverage from Anfield as Liverpool host Everton in the Merseyside derby. Kick off is at 13.30 CET
Liverpool vs Everton: preview
The Premier League will resume following the international break with an eagerly-awaited Merseyside Derby at Anfield. Find out how and where to watch.
For Everton, the short jaunt across Stanley Park has not been a fruitful one in recent seasons.The Blues have not won at Anfield since September 1999, when Kevin Campbell scored the decisive goal in a 0-1 victory, while a fresh-faced Steven Gerrard saw red for the home side. Staggeringly, in the 21st century, Everton have held the lead at Anfield for only 30 minutes more than non-league side Havant and Waterlooville.
Both sides come in to this fixture in fine form. Since the turn of the year, Everton have lost just once in the Premier League, a gallant defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane. Liverpool have been similarly impressive in recent weeks, chalking up wins against North London rivals Tottenham and Arsenal, and securing a draw against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.
Klopp’s chaps are in fourth position, and with Manchester United and Arsenal breathing down their neck, will be eager to consolidate that last Champions League qualification spot. Six points further down the table, Everton sit in seventh place, with eyes firmly set on Europa League qualification.
Ronnie Moran remembered
As if the derby isn't an emotional day as it is on Merseyside, Saturday's will have an extra dose of poignancy as Liverpool will be remembering former player, assistant coach and caretaker manager Ronnie Moran whose funeral many players and coaches, past and present, attended on Thursday. Moran served the club for 48 years and the Kop have planned a special tribute with a huge mosaic to be unveiled as the teams take to the pitch.
Everton's new stadium project given boost
Everton took a giant step towards the go-ahead for their new 300 million pound stadium on Friday with the local council approving a finance package. The Toffees hope to move from Goodison to the new ground at Bramley Moore Dock by 2020.
This international break has provided both managers with plenty of ammunition to perpetuate the ‘club vs country’ narrative. Klopp and Koeman will have to prepare their teams within the context of fresh injuries, fatigue, and copious air miles.
Adam Lallana is the most notable absentee for the home side, courtesy of a thigh injury picked up representing England. Lallana has always been a stylish, impeccably-balanced player. This season, the midfielder has added incision to his game; contributing seven goals and a further seven assists. Only Sadio Mané, also a graduate of the well-trodden path between Southampton and Liverpool, has been involved in more goals (12 goals, 5 assists).
Jordan Henderson will also miss out, while Daniel Sturridge is doubtful. Danny Ings is a long-term absentee.
Liverpool whisked Brazilian duo Coutinho and Roberto Firmino back across the Atlantic on a private jet to ensure that their preparation is as comfortable as possible; yet a certain amount of grogginess is still to be expected.
Ronald Koeman has been hurled a big, ugly, international-football shaped curveball.
Seamus Coleman is the high-profile absentee. The Irishman suffered a wince-inducing leg break in the fixture between the Republic of Ireland and Wales, courtesy of a reckless challenge by Neil Taylor. Midfielder James McCarthy pulled up during the warm up of that same match, and will be unavailable.
Bad news also arrived from La Paz. Ramiro Funes Mori injured his knee as Argentina fell to a 2-0 defeat to Bolivia. He will be out for the rest of the season.
Morgan Schneiderlin is on the road to recovery, but the match on Saturday will come too soon for the Frenchman.
A cursory glance at Liverpool’s performances this season suggest that Ronald Koeman will be best served by a defensive, disciplined set up with a focus on the counter attack. Klopp’s side have, on occasion, struggled to break down well-organised opposition. Without Adam Lallana to hover between Everton’s defensive lines and thread through key passes, they could face a similar problem on Saturday.
Tottenham Hotspur’s 2-0 defeat at Anfield in February demonstrated the naivety of playing expansively against Liverpool. The Reds’ front three thrive on space.
Expect Koeman, therefore, to stifle Liverpool with a patient, calculated game-plan. With the dynamism of Lukaku and Barkley further up the pitch, Everton have the tools to punish the home side on the counter attack.
Ross Barkley has created 67 goalscoring chances in the Premier League this season, more than any other Englishman.
The two players with the most Merseyside Derby appearances are both Welsh. Neville Southall played in this fixture 41 times for Everton, while Ian Rush played 36 times for Liverpool.
Liverpool v Everton: match odds
Betfair are offering a Liverpool win at a special price of 8/1.