The 228th Merseyside Derby between fierce rivals Liverpool and Everton kicks off week 30 of the Barclays Premier League in fiery fashion.
Both sides have to cope with injuries sustained by important players over the recent international break as the respective squads look a little thin on the ground. Liverpool will again be without influential skipper and midfield metronome Jordan Henderson while Adam Lallana is out with a thigh problem. Everton’s main concerns are also in midfield where Morgan Schneiderlin, Muhamed Besic and Yannick Bolasie are all sidelined. Impressive right back Seamus Coleman will miss the rest of the season after a sickening leg break against Wales.
The Reds have had a stranglehold over the Toffees in recent encounters. However, Ronald Koeman’s side are a dangerous proposition and in Romelu Lukaku, they possess the most lethal striker in the Premier League. Emotions are sure to run high at Anfield on one of the red-letter days in any season.
Ruled out: Henderson, Lallana, Ejaria, Ings, Sturridge
Doubtful: Grujic, Firmino, Coutinho
Probable starting XI (433): Mignolet; Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner; Can, Lucas, Wijnaldum; Coutinho, Firmino, Mané
Ruled out: Bolasie, Coleman, Funes Mori, Schneiderlin, Besic
Probable starting XI (433): Robles; Holgate, Williams, Jagielka, Baines; Gueye, Barry, Davies; Calvert-Lewin, Lukaku, Barkley
Philippe Coutinho scored for Brazil in their World Cup qualifier against Paraguay and the mercurial midfielder has been one of the standout players in their recent revival and excellent run of results. In the absence of skipper Henderson, Emre Can will again be handed a senior role in the engine room by manager Klopp, but it’s important that the fiery German keeps his head in a volatile atmosphere.
With so many midfielders out injured, the excellent Idrissa Gueye will be the key man in the heart of the Merseyside Derby battle for Everton. Keeping the best for last, no player in the Premier League has netted more often than Romelu Lukaku. The brilliant Belgian has 21 strikes and tomorrow wouldn’t be a bad time for him to get on the score sheet again - he already has 5 career goals against the Reds.
Key Match Stats
- Liverpool are undefeated in their last 18 home matches against Everton in all competitions.
- Liverpool have scored at least 2 goals in 9 of their last 11 home matches in the Premier League.
- Liverpool are undefeated in their last 12 Merseyside Derbies.
- Everton have scored at least 2 goals in their last 4 matches in the Premier League.
- Everton are undefeated in 11 of their last 12 matches in the Premier League.
- Romelu Lukaku has scored 5 times against Liverpool in the Premier League.
Verdict & Picks
Liverpool have often gotten the better of Everton in recent times and for that reason, they are clear favourites at 1.71 on ClickaBet tomorrow. There might be some value in backing Everton to get a draw at 3.98 considering their excellent form in 2017.