Opposition Tactics: The View From Across Merseyside
It’s here again; another Merseyside derby. And it couldn’t have come at a better time for Jurgen Klopp’s charges; who go to Goodison Park on the back of a very satisfactory 5-0 thumping of a previously, high flying Watford. For Everton and Marco Silva, the last 5 games have been of mixed fortunes, with 2 wins and 3 losses. One thing is for certain though; Everton will be looking to avenge the dramatic last minute win by their neighbours at Anfield and put a dent in Liverpool’s title quest. With 10 games to go, it certainly is poised to be a cracker.
Gylfi Sigurdsson is still the man to beat of all of Marco Silva’s charges; he has scored 11 goals this season and 3 assists. The Icelander has already bettered his goal tally from last season by 5 goals and scored a brace in Everton’s last game against Cardiff City.
In addition to his ability to utilize spaces and create something out of nothing, Sigurdsson is also something of a “dead ball specialist”. The reds will do well to avoid unnecessary free kicks around the 18yard box in this game.
Everton may be at home, but Sigurdsson must not be allowed to roam.
MATCH FACTS/ STATS
- Everton are winless in 18 matches against Liverpool in all competitions. Their last win came over 8 years ago back in October 2010 – a 2-0 win in the Premier League – thanks to goals from Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta.
- No other team has conceded more goals from dead-ball situations this season in the Premier League than Everton, while Liverpool have scored the most goals from set-pieces and corners this season.
- Defending set-pieces has been a problem for Marco Silva’s sides during his time managing in the Premier League – with his teams conceded more goals from these situation than any other manager since he was first appointed at Hull in January 2017.
- Sunday will be the 100th league Merseyside derby at Goodison Park and the bad news for Everton is that no team has won more away league games there than Liverpool.
- Liverpool’s 33 wins at Goodison is two more than Arsenal. The Reds’ most recent win on Everton’s turf came in dramatic fashion – Sadio Mane’s 94th-minute winner, back in December 2016.
- Jurgen Klopp is yet to taste defeat in the Merseyside derby since his appointment as Liverpool Manager in October 2015 – unbeaten in his six Premier League meetings against Everton.
- His side’s form may have dipped recently, having dropped more points in 2019 than they did from August until December last year, but their record against teams outside the top six goes from strength to strength- 26 wins, 5 draws.
Whatever happens, here’s hoping that the Reds triumph at Goodison. Imagine the scenes if Origi grabs another last minute winner. I know, that’s my heart wishing for some more drama. A win anyway it comes is welcome. WeGoAgain. YNWA!
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