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Dublin: 12 °C Friday 6 December, 2019
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MANCHESTER CITY WON’T let slip their crown without a fight, so can Liverpool maintain their distance as they enter an absurdly busy December?

Tonight they host city rivals Everton, who are on the verge of the relegation zone after a wretched start to the season.

They also carry a famously bad record at Anfield: their last win here came two years before the iPod was invented.

Marco Silva wears the haunted air of a man who knows he is not long for this job, while Liverpool have made their best-ever start to the season and given plenty of reason to flash Jurgen Klopp’s suspiciously white teeth.

On form and reputation, it’s difficult to think of a more one-sided clash between these sides before, but then again, the build-up of the game mandates a club official to find a window at Anfield from which to fling The Form Book.

Welcome to our live coverage of Liverpool/Everton, which kicks off at 8.15pm.

There are five other games also happening tonight – including United against Spurs – all kicking off at 7.30pm. We’ll keep you updated on those as we go.

Get in touch with us below the line, or email gavincooney@the42.ie.

Some surprising team news follows…

Team news 

Liverpool 

Given Liverpool have approximately 58 games this December, Jurgen Klopp was always bound to rest players in games this month. What it surprising is that he’s done it against Everton. Mo Salah and Roberto Firmino drop to the bench, as does Jordan Henderson. Adam Lallana starts in midfield, with Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri starting in attack. 

Alisson is suspended for his red card against Brighton, so Adrian starts in his place and Irish U21 ‘keeper Caoimhin Kelleher is promoted to the bench. 

Fabinho again misses out through injury. 

 Everton 

Everton were unfortunate to lose to Leicester at the weekend – and have thus kept faith with the same line-up. Seamus Coleman is out through injury, and we can’t imagine he will be sitting too comfortably if Sidibe replicates his fine performance at the weekend. 

Here are the other games down for decision tonight, and all kicked off at 7.30pm. 

  • Chelsea v Aston Villa
  • Leicester v Watford 
  • Man United v Spurs 
  • Southampton v Norwich 
  • Wolves v West Ham 

And the first goal of the night has gone to Marcus Rashford! 

United take an early lead against Spurs. 

Jurgen Klopp has defended his team selection for tonight’s derby. 

It should be pointed out that the last time the front three read Shaqiri/Origi/Mane, Liverpool beat Barcelona 4-0.

And Origi has a bit of previous with Everton, too…

Goals! 

Southampton 1-0 Norwich (Ings)

Wolves 1-0 West Ham (Dendoncker) 

Chelsea 1-0 Aston Villa (Abraham)

Peter Crouch is pitchside at Anfield tonight for Amazon Prime, and says Everton won’t be impressed by Klopp’s team selection. 

“It shows huge confidence and it’s a little bit belittling for Everton. If I was in that Everton dressing room, I’d be fuming.”

You may not be too interested in those quotes – but it gives us an excuse to share this. 

If Everton are looking for a few omens ahead of this game, here’s one from Hakaman in the comments. 

Liverpool have equalled their longest unbeaten run in the top league which was at 31 games which last ended in March 1988 when they lost to ……. Everton.

Also – the last time Everton won at Anfield was also a year which featured impeachment proceedings against a US president. 

Hey, you cling to what you have to…

Spurs have been pummeled at Old Trafford so far…and now they’ve equalised! 

Dele Alli makes it 1-1! 

The teams are out at Anfield! 

And Aston Villa have levelled against Chelsea, through Trezeguet! 

You’ll Never Walk Alone is belted out with a little more gusto than usual ahead of kick-off. The Kop then erects a mosaic in memory of the victims of the Hillsbrough tragedy, as the players gather for a minute’s applause. 

Chants of ‘Justice for the 96′ are ringing around the ground, too.

Tonight’s referee is Mike Dean, and we’re underway! 

1Mins

Liverpool begin with vigour, and Mane heads over a great Robertson cross on the run. 

They look like they are playing a 4-2-3-1, with Wijnaldum and Milner in midfield and Lallana playing behind Origi. 

4Mins

A brief interlude with the half-time scores from elsewhere: 

Chelsea 1-1 Aston Villa 

Leicester 0-0 Watford 

Man United 1-1 Spurs 

Southampton 2-0 Norwich 

Wolves 1-0 West Ham 

5Mins

Everton are sitting in with a 5-4-1 when they don’t have the ball, and Liverpool haven’t picked them open just yet. A lot of lateral passing so far. 

Flag 7Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 1-0 Everton (Origi)

They’ve found the key now! Liverpool break from their own penalty area, Mane strides forward and slides a gorgeous pass behind the Everton defence for Origi, whose first touch takes it around Pickford and allows him tap into an empty net! 

Origi haunts Everton….again! 

10Mins

Cracking covering tackle by Milner thwarts Iwobi, who robbed Robertson. Everton have had nothing else since the goal, Liverpool are in control. 

12Mins

Digne finds space down the left by beating Alexander-Arnold and crosses, only to see Van Dijk clear. Van Dijk then gives Alexander-Arnold a bit of a bollocking. 

13Mins

Shaqiri – starting his first league game since January – tries to pop a ball over the top for Mane but it runs too close to Pickford. 

16Mins

Davies draws a foul on the edge of his own box from Robertson, and there’s a bit of afters between the two, to which Robertson responds with a laugh. 

Mike Dean gives the pair a talking-to and neither get in any further trouble. 

18Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 2-0 Everton (Shaqiri) 

Good grief – what a move by Liverpool! Alexander-Arnold pings a cross-field ball forward for Mane, who kills the ball perfectly, gallops into the box and then slides a ball to his left for Shaqiri, who caps a gorgeous diagonal run by sliding the ball beyond Pickford. 

Sensational stuff. 

19Mins

Richarlison heads over from a corner, spurning a chance for Everton to hit back immediately. 

“Going down” echoing around Anfield now. 

22Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 2-1 Everton (Keane) 

Now they have got that goal! Liverpool had plenty of chances to clear the ball but failed, and as Lovren made a total hames of Iwobi’s cross into the box, the ball breaks for Keane and he fires into the roof of the net! 

23Mins

Twice Iwobi forces Van Dijk into uncomfortable clearances, the first after Lallana was too easily dispossessed in midfield. 

Everton have a bit more belief now – and Liverpool’s remarkable run of failing to keep a clean sheet at home this season continues. 

24Mins

Goals elsewhere: 

Manchester United 2-1 Spurs (Rashford) 

Chelsea 2-1 Aston Villa (Mount) 

27Mins

Marco Silva goes spare at the fourth official as Calvert-Lewin goes down under contact from van Dijk. Iwobi sends the striker behind the defence, but his first touch is poor and van Djik catches up, leans into him and thus the ball goes harmlessly wide. 

It was checked by VAR, but no foul! 

It’s all Everton at the moment, and Liverpool suddenly look terribly unsure of themselves. 

29Mins

Everton are flying into challenges and are winning most of them, at the moment. Alexander-Arnold, meanwhile, gets away with a nasty-looking plant of his studs on Digne’s foot. 

29Mins

Elsewhere tonight – Jamie Vardy has scored a penalty to put Leicester 1-0 up against Watford. 

30Mins

Our first booking is for Richarlison, who leaves Shaqiri in a heap for following through in a challenge. 

32Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 3-1 Everton (Origi) 

Divock Origi stalks Marco Silva’s nightmares. Lovren knocks a ball over the top, Origi plucks it out of the air with a perfect touch and then lifts the ball over Pickford. 

Another gorgeous goal, and it comes amid Everton’s best spell of the game. Can they respond again? 

35Mins

Silva making a change already! He is, em, shoring things up by bringing up Bernard for Sidibe. 

There doesn’t appear to be an injury there, so there’s a change of system here as Everton revert to a back four. Holgate goes to the right to deal with Mane. Best of luck with that. 

35Mins

Also, this blog’s take earlier that Coleman might be worried about Sidibe repeating his performance from last weekend…it was a bad take. Nothing at all to worry about on that basis. 

37Mins

Liverpool are back in control, and Pickford does well to dive and beat away a low Mane cross that was bound for Wijnaldum and then the net. 

39Mins

Oh, Iwobi. Richarlison gives him the ball on the edge of the box, and just as you’re expecting him to lash it goalwards, he tamely sidefoots wide with zero conviction. 

40Mins

Calvert-Lewin does well to win a free off Robertson near the end line, just outside the box. Danger here for Liverpool…

41Mins

…Lovren does well to glance it clear. Everton recycle the move, but Iwobi wastes it by shanking his cross over the end-line. 

41Mins

It’s not all bad Everton fans – Norwich have a goal back against Southampton. If Saints win that game and this stays as is, Everton are heading into the relegation zone. 

44Mins

Lovren does very, very well to divert a Richarlison cross behind for a corner! It was going to be a tap-in for Calvert-Lewin. 

46Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 4-1 Everton (Mane)

Another devastating counter by Liverpool. Liverpool clear the corner and Mane holds off a defender and sets a counter in motion by passing to Alexander-Arnold. He sets off in chase of the full-back, takes the ball back on the edge of the Everton box, and sweeps the ball in first-time with his left foot. 

Stunning, and Mane has been irresistible tonight. 

45Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 4-2 Everton (Richarlison)

Blimey, this is madness. It’s poor from Liverpool: Alexander-Arnold didn’t get close enough to Bernard, and his cross is then swiped at – rather than headed – by Lovren, which allows the ball pass through for Richarlison who diverts the ball beyond Adrian. 

This is bonkers. 

45Mins

HT: Liverpool 4-2 Everton

Aaaaand breathe.

Liverpool have been devastating going forward and Everton’s defence is hapless. But Everton have been committed and have created plenty of chances, while Liverpool have looked as uncertain defensively as they have in a long time. 

We are off for some oxygen, back in a few. 

45Mins

MISSING: Goalkeepers. 

45Mins

Peeeeeep! We’re back underway at Anfield! 

45Mins

The full-time scores from the 7.30 kick-offs, as Jose Mourinho’s poor record at Old Trafford continues. 

Chelsea 2-1 Aston Villa 

Leicester 2-0 Watford 

Man United 2-1 Spurs 

Southampton 2-1 Norwich 

Wolves 2-0 West Ham

51Mins

Everton win a free to the right of the penalty area, with Sigurdsson interested…

51Mins

…instead it’s Digne who curls it over the crossbar. 

53Mins

Origi traps the ball in the box and spins, but has hit shot blocked in the box. Milner’s follow-up is blocked away, and Liverpool have a corner. 

53Mins

Shaqiri’s corner is headed away at the front post by Richarlison. We go again… 

54Mins

Everton clear the corner at the second attempt but their attempt at a counter ends with Alexander-Arnold tackling Bernard. Liverpool respond by setting Oirigi in behind, and he draws another corner from Mina. Keane, however, heads away under pressure from Van Dijk. 

55Mins

Origi again takes on Mina, and draws a foul outside the box. Impressive strength from the striker. 

57Mins

Liverpool make a hames of it, as Shaqiri rolls the free-kick short only to see Alexander-Arnold knocks it back to him in an offside position. 

57Mins

Mane wins a free-kick off Keane in the middle of the pitch, which Alexander-Arnold overcooks. 

Moisie Kean about to come on for Everton. 

60Mins

Kean comes on for Calvert-Lewin. Now would be a pretty good time to kick-start his Everton career…

60Mins

And he wins a corner with his first action, which Richarlison heads straight at Adrian! 

64Mins

Tom Davies has a go from distance, but it’s comfortable for Adrian. 

65Mins

Everton are in the ascendancy now, and Wijnaldum sloppily sends a pass for Alexander-Arnold over the line. Klopp’s about to respond by sending on Jordan Henderson. 

66Mins

Tom Davies is booked for flying into a late tackle on Alexander-Arnold. 

67Mins

The game has become scrappy in the last few minutes, interrupted by a string of fouls. Lallana suffers the latest. 

69Mins

Liverpool break with a lovely ball by Shaqiri over the top for Mane, but for once, he can’t quite bring the ball under control in the box and Everton, for once, survive. 

72Mins

Everton fans are unimpressed as Silva swaps Davies for Morgan Schneiderlin, which is met by boos from the away end. 

Klopp makes a double change: Henderson and Firmino for Lallana and Origi. 

73Mins

Everton have faded from this game in the last 10 minutes or so, and Liverpool are exerting more control without creating a whole lot. 

76Mins

Liverpool continue to play keep-ball, and they are playing it well: lovely link-up between Shaqiri, Wijnaldum and Henderson earns warm applause. Mane then wins a foul on the left wing. 

77Mins

Wijnaldum met Shaqiri’s cross but headed over from just past the penalty spot. 

79Mins

Alexander-Arnold, for some reason, dawdles on the ball outside the box and is robbed. Sigurdsson’s cross is cleared behind for a corner, which Liverpool deal with. 

81Mins

Mane misses a sitter! That would have been the game for Liverpool. Henderson hooks a ball over the Everton defence – again it’s so easy – he traps the ball brilliantly, and then sidefoots the ball wide of the right-hand post. 

It should have been five! 

81Mins

Liverpool are about to declare for four: Joe Gomez is coming on. 

83Mins

Digne is set free down the left, stands a cross to the back post but it evades everyone. 

Alexander-Arnold – decidedly flawed defensively tonight – makes way for Gomez, so it will likely remain a back four for Liverpool. 

Everton, meanwhile, a have a free-kick in midfield that is sliced behind by Wijnaldum for a corner. 

84Mins

Mane misses another chance! 

Van Dijk clears the corner, Henderson sends Mane one-on-one, he rounds Pickford but can’t get his shot in! Mane was definitely pushed by Calvert-Lewin, but didn’t go to ground! 

85Mins

WHAT a chance for Kean! 

This time it’s Kean who is sent one-on-one, but he puts his shot narrowly wide of the left-hand post! 

That had to go in! 

87Mins

Everton are not giving up. Bernard drives forward but sees his shot blocked by Gomez. When the bal arrives in the box a minute later, Richarlison is penalised for a push on Lovren. 

88Mins

Ironic cheers from the Kop as Pickford holds onto a high dropping ball. 

88Mins

Liverpool counter again, sent away by a lovely swivel by Firmino. Wijnaldum feeds Shaqiri on the right, whose shot is blocked away. Gomez pounces on the ball, and wins a corner off Digne. 

90Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 5-2 Everton (Wijnaldum)

That’s it for this game and perhaps for Marco Silva. Firmino makes a fool of Holgate on the left wing, pulls the ball back for Wijnaldum, who blasts the ball into the corner. 

90Mins

Liverpool now about to set a new club record for 32 top-flight games unbeaten. Everton ended the 31-game run in 1988; history won’t repeat itself tonight. 

Three minutes to be added on. 

Flag 90Mins

FT: Liverpool 5-2 Everton

Liverpool roll on, and go eight points clear at the top once again, setting a new club record of 32 top-flight games unbeaten as they do so. 

Everton drop into the relegation zone and may soon be on the lookout for a new manager. This was a dreadful night for Silva, whose back three was ripped apart and had to be changed after half an hour. 

Liverpool were stodgy at the back in the first half but were comfortable in the second, and could draw on impressive performances from James Milner, Wijnaldum and Origi. Sadio Mane, however, was ahead of them all, and is one of Europe’s best footballers at the moment. 

Thanks for following, bye! 

About the author:

Gavin Cooney

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