Liverpool vs Everton – Analysis, Prediction, Team News
Monday 13th February 2023
As part of our weekend Premier League predictions, we look at Everton’s visit to Anfield for the Merseyside derby. Is Liverpool’s well publicised poor form a leveller? Can Everton continue to improve? Read on with our Liverpool vs Everton prediction.
Liverpool vs Everton Match Preview
After a goalless draw in September at Goodison, it is time for the second Merseyside derby of the season. Liverpool come into the game amid a full-blown crisis. Coach Jurgen Klopp is experiencing his most difficult spell in charge of the Reds. Indeed, they sit bottom of the form table over the last four games – their only point was a goalless draw with Chelsea. At the same time, they shipped three goals each in losses away to Brentford, Brighton, and Wolves. Oxlaide-Chamberlain’s finish at the Community Stadium is their only goal across this period.
Liverpool’s home form is better, having won five of the last eight at Anfield. Liverpool will know that form often goes out of the window on derby day. Sitting in tenth place with 29 points after 20 games, Liverpool desperately need to improve fast. Liverpool won this fixture 2-0 last season, and a repeat would ease some pressure.
Everton enter the derby still in the bottom three, with 18 points from 21 games. With Wolves scoring five goals in their last two games, Everton are now the lowest scorers in the division with 16 goals. However, despite a run that has seen the Blues lose six of the last eight league games, they have already benefited from the ‘new manager bounce’, as new coach Sean Dyche managed to win his first game in charge – at home to league leaders Arsenal with a second-half header from Tarkowski.
Everton were good value for this victory and put in much more effort than they did under the previous coach Frank Lampard. The key for them now is to replicate this performance every week, but having won only one of their ten away games this season, getting something at Anfield will be easier said than done. Still, Liverpool have massive doubts going into this one; Everton can take much heart from last week’s win.
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Thiago, Fabinho, Jota, Firmino
Will Not Play: Van Dijk, Konate, Melo, Diaz
Might Not Play: Garner, Calvert-Lewin
Will Not Play: Patterson, Keane, Townsend
Liverpool vs Everton Lineups (Predicted)
Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson; Robertson, Matip, Gomez, Alexander-Arnold; Bajcetic, Henderson, Thiago; Gakpo, Nunez, Salah
Everton (4-3-3): Pickford; Mykolenko, Tarkowski, Coady, Coleman; Gueye, Onana, Doucoure; Iwobi, McNeil, Maupay
Liverpool vs Everton Analysis
Tactics Out the Window? A Real Dogs of War Match
Both teams will likely play 4-3-3 in this match, though Everton will switch to a 4-5-1 without the ball, where Iwobi and McNeil will have to defend against the Liverpool wide threat. However, we don’t see this being a match of exceptional tactical and technical quality. Liverpool are in dire straits right now, and Everton are fighting relegation for the second successive season.
Therefore, we see this match being a real fight and war of attrition. Everton will be running on adrenaline and will likely do what they did last week against Arsenal; getting right in Liverpool’s faces, pressing them like monsters, and giving them no time on the ball whatsoever. Gueye, Onana, and Doucoure will use their considerable energy, athleticism, and physicality to close down Bajcetic, Thiago (if he is fit), Henderson, and the Liverpool centre-backs and full-backs.
Liverpool must try to dispel the Everton enthusiasm early on. Indeed, an early Liverpool goal could change the entire complexion of the game and pop the Everton balloon. If Liverpool can get the ball down and complete some passes, they have the ability (though not the form) to find ways through Everton’s press and get the ball wide to Gakpo and Salah. However, make no mistake, this game will be a battle. We expect it to be frenetic and played at 100 mph and for there to be plenty of meaty challenges and yellow cards. In such an environment, making chances is difficult, but both teams must try to find some end product.
Wide Areas and Attacking
Both teams must attempt to get supply their wide men and get the ball into the box. We anticipate Robertson and Alexander-Arnold getting forward and trying to cross the ball for the tall Nunez. Nunez will also drift wide left to aid Gakpo. In this way, Robertson, Gakpo, and Nunez can overload that left-hand side and put sustained pressure on the ageing Coleman at right-back. Coleman is an experienced and wily player. How he performs against the likes of Gakpo and Nunez when the Liverpool men try to make their way into the box will determine much in this game. Indeed, Coleman dealt very well with Arsenal’s Martinelli last week and will look to shut down his opponents again.
On the right, Salah and Alexander-Arnold must try to take the game to Myklolenko. The young Ukrainian has been playing better recently but is still somewhat suspect defensively at times. Gueye and Onana must fill the left channel and help the young man. Tarkowski and Coady must be very diligent in their box; they will likely have to head the ball out often from Liverpool crosses, where the two are in their element. They are less comfortable on the ground, so the trickery of Nunez, Salah, and Gakpo could be crucial – as could that of Elliott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carvalho, or a possibly fit-again Jota if they are introduced.
Onana and Doucoure are critical in this game in terms of Everton attacks, given their physical strength. As well as their previously mentioned pressing and energy, they will both look to drive forward from midfield and bear down on the Liverpool defence. Liverpool’s midfield has been slow and pedestrian in recent months, so athletic monsters like these two are the last players they will want to face. Onana and Doucoure are also good technically and will look to find little pockets and spaces where they can upset the Liverpool shape and find passes out wide to Iwobi and McNeil.
Crosses into the box and set pieces will be an excellent weapon for Everton – Matip and Gomez have looked very suspect recently in the absence of Van Dijk and Konate. Onana and Doucoure are tall players who can arrive in the box and finish off the chances they start. Calvert-Lewin’s fitness is touch and go, but Everton would feel even more confident in their crossing ability if he was fit. He may well come on in the second half, but Maupay will likely start, and he is decent at holding the ball up and bringing the others into play.
Overall, the power of Onana and Doucoure and the wide play of the two full-backs and Iwobi and McNeil could prove dividends. The tricky Gray is another possible starting option, though bringing him on fresh against tired legs in the second half might be something Dyche has planned.
Both teams are in bad shape right now. As stated, Liverpool are bottom of the form table over the last four games. They are also out of both domestic cups and have a massive Champions League Final rematch approaching against Real Madrid next week. Therefore, Klopp will try his best to drum them into some semblance of form. Everton can take great confidence from their win against Arsenal. They know they are generally up for the fight against their illustrious neighbours.
Therefore, we see this being a real battle on the pitch, with much action and tackles flying in. If they were in good form, Liverpool would likely win this game, but given their issues, we think it will be a pretty even contest, and the two sides will probably share the spoils.
Liverpool 1-1 Everton
Liverpool vs Everton Betting Tip – Draw Odds:
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