Liverpool vs Everton
| Wednesday, December 4th |
Premier League | Anfield
8:15PM BST / 3:15PM EST
The grind continues, as Liverpool head into yet another high-stakes game on only three days rest, this time for a fixture that has been more of a geographic and historic rivalry than it has had competitive results in recent years. Despite the games typically being tight affairs, the Toffees have not won a Premier League match at Anfield since 1999, and have only won a single derby, home or away, in the last decade.
It’s not looking too promising for Marco Silva’s men this time round either, with the Blues sitting 17th, two points clear of relegation, following their injury time loss at Leicester, and the manager is reportedly feeling the heat ahead of his third Merseyside derby.
The Toffees are not as bad as their league position suggests, however, and a misfiring frontline along with a goalkeeper who can’t seem to catch a break has seen them drop points in a number of games in which they, on the strength of play, would have deserved more. Whether that luck will turn against a team that can’t seem to stop pulling out results remains to be seen, but Everton should not be taken lightly despite the chaos currently surrounding the club.
Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Keïta; Mané, Firmino, Salah
For the Reds, Adrían will take his turn between the sticks as Alisson sits out following his sending off at the weekend, while Joël Matip remains unavailable with a persistent knee issue. Otherwise the back five will look familiar, with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Virgil van Dijk and Andrew Robertson protecting their Spanish stopper.
The loss of Fabinho will undoubtedly be felt by Jürgen Klopp, but Jordan Henderson showed against Brighton that he has not forgotten how to play the holding midfield role, and is likely to retun to it tomorrow. Georginio Wijnaldum is also in all probability a lock, with the final spot a choice between an Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain who is playing himself into form, and a Naby Keïta who has yet to start a Premier League game this season.
Mohamed Salah’s ankle is seemingly still bothering the Egyptian, but the two-time, reigning Premier League top goal scorer will return to the pitch, looking to add to his single goal in Merseyside derbies, while Roberto Firmino will be hoping for his first. Sadio Mané returns from upsettingly placing behind Cristiano Ronaldo in the Ballon d’Or awards last night, looking to take his 2019 goals tally to 30.
Some Red eyes will undoubtedly be glancing towards Turf Moor tonight, where Burnley host third placed title contenders Manchester City, but for Klopp as his charges, only Wednesday night and Everton should be on their minds.
What the Managers Said
Jürgen Klopp: “The stats, from my point of view, they help Everton rather us because they want to strike back, they want to show that they can do different. They can sort a lot of problems in one game maybe, so we have a very, very important football game for us.”
Marco Silva: “When you play at Anfield it is a fantastic atmosphere to play in. For sure it will be a tough game. It is a special game for the city and the fans. We must go there and embrace the challenge with big courage, like we did last season. Let’s go and enjoy it. ”
Referee: Mike Dean
Assistant referees: Darren Cann, Dan Robathan
Fourth official: Anthony Taylor
VAR: Martin Atkinson, Andy Halliday
Kickoff is set for 8:15PM GMT/3:15PM EST tomorrow, and television listings for the match can be found on LiveSoccerTV.
In the meantime, and as always, we’ll be keeping you updated with all the buildup to the game, including team news as it’s released, our live matchday thread, and post-match recaps from The Liverpool Offside staff. If you want to join the discussion, sign up for an SB Nation account to have your say on the action as it happens.