Liverpool and Everton’s latest Merseyside Derby failed to live up to the hype as the presumptive champions got little going in a 0-0 draw at Goodison Park on Sunday.
The Reds dropped points for just the third time this Premier League season and lead Man City by 23 points before the two-time reigning champs host Burnley on Monday.
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Liverpool now needs a combination of five points won by the Reds or lost by City. Liverpool hosts Crystal Palace on Wednesday and City has two matches before the Reds’ following match versus City on July 2.
Everton moves to 38 points, six back of seventh-place Sheffield United and four behind eighth-place Spurs in the race for European placement.
Three things we learned
1. Injuries sting Liverpool: Already without Andy Robertson, an injury to deputizing James Milner forced Joe Gomez into the match in the first half. Then a 73rd minute injury to Joel Matip forced Dejan Lovren into the match moments before Jurgen Klopp was set to bring on Mohamed Salah as a super sub. The injuries during this congested schedule will not threaten Liverpool’s title but will hurt their chances to break some records.
2. All played, but few played well: You can count on one hand players that really stood out for their contributions. Mason Holgate was quite good for Everton and Richarlison had his moments but his lack of finishing touch kept the Toffees off the board. Liverpool’s back line was strong after some early wobbles and Naby Keita and Fabinho both showed rust amidst great industry. This match falls into the category of forgettable.
3. Ancelotti’s chance hands youth a chance: Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti gave 19-year-old academy product Anthony Gordon a first PL start in a big spot (keeping Gylfi Sigurdsson on the bench nonetheless). The Merseyside Derby did not prove too big of a stage for the midfielder, though he was about as influential as you’d expect given the circumstances. Gordon showed promise in converting a dribble, recording a key pass, and completing his only cross over a low amount of touches in 60 minutes.
Man of the Match
Richarlison despite forgetting his finishing boots. He was the most dangerous player for either side with respect to Alexander-Arnold. Holgate was very good.
Richarlison drilled an early show wide of goal and Alex Iwobi also sent the Reds a warning sign as the hosts started brightly.
Liverpool, of course, found its footing with a dozen minutes, missing a shot wide of the goal before Trent Alexander-Arnold’s service on a free kick was substandard.
Another Alexander-Arnold free kick led to Joel Matip heading wide and Richarlison had an offside chance go awry at the other end.
Roberto Firmino missed a prime chance when he shot wide despite Naby Keita racing down his left side.
Pickford got low to stop another Alexander-Arnold free kick before halftime.
James Milner needed to leave the match in the 42nd minute following a leg injury. Joe Gomez took his. place at left back with Andy Robertson out.
Mason Holgate made a great block on a Takumi Minamino shot from prime location in the 45th.
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Everton took off Gordon for Sigurdsson at the hour mark.
Sadio Mane hit the deck to earn. a very dangerous free kick in the 63rd minute. That’s Alexander-Arnold country, but his effort turned off the wall and wide of the frame.
Jurgen Klopp plugged Georginio Wijnaldum in for Naby Keita in the 65th minute, a fourth sub after Divock Origi and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain joined Gomez in entering the fray.
Everton had a great chance with 11 minutes to play when Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s flick of a Richarlison cross was palmed away by Alisson Becker and Tom Davies saw his deflected rebound hit the post.
Holgate couldn’t turn his diving header of the ensuing rocket corner on goal.
Pickford tipped a Fabinho free kick over the bar in stoppage time, and the ensuing corner was faulty.
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