Big Match Breakdown: Liverpool v Everton
Merseyside derby has added cup spice
The FA Cup third round positively roars into life tonight as Liverpool host Everton in what should be a blistering derby clash.
Both sides of Stanley Park will fancy their chances of winning the famous trophy – and both sides could use some silverware.
Liverpool have home advantage, and are unquestionably the better team. But Philippe Coutinho looks to be nearing his move to Barcelona, while Jurgen Klopp may be wary of any fatigue following the hectic festive schedule.
Everton are on a lacklustre run of form, but the Toffees have no European commitments to worry about in the New Year, so they can go all out for glory at Anfield.
It’s all set up for a great game and the Coral News Team have all the pre-match info…
Everton fans can look away now. The Toffees haven’t won on their rivals’ patch in the 21st century. 1999 was the last time they tasted victory across the park.
That’s not to say they always lose though. Six of the last 11 meetings at Anfield have ended all-square.
The most recent clash at Liverpool – Big Sam’s first as Everton boss – ended 1-1 last month.
Jurgen Klopp has frequently bemoaned the busy fixture schedule at this time of year, and could well make changes.
Liverpool play Manchester City next week in the Premier League, and they are still in European competition.
Dominic Solanke and Daniel Sturridge will both be after a start. Loris Karius may well be the man in goal, while Danny Ings could get some action too.
At the back, Virgil van Dijk could make his debut, although throwing him into the middle of a Merseyside derby might not be ideal.
As for Everton, the Premier League is their sole focus for the second half of the campaign. Anything higher than seventh is out of the question, so a good cup run would be welcomed.
Everton will be hoping Klopp does indeed rest the likes of Sadio Mane, Philippe Coutinho and Mohamed Salah.
How the Toffees deal with whichever array of strikers the Liverpool boss chooses will prove crucial. They managed to do just that last month in the league meeting.
At the other end, Yannick Bolasie has been a timely boost for the Blues, and his pace and tricky down the flanks will trouble Liverpool’s suspect defenders.
With a buoyant Friday night Anfield crowd ready to enjoy a second derby in two months, this should be an excellent atmosphere for the occasion.
The Reds should have the upper hand, but Everton have scored in three of their last four visits to Anfield, so Liverpool to Win and Both Teams to Score stands out at 9/4.
But if Everton aren’t up for it, then Liverpool and over 3.5 goals could appeal too at 13/5.
There have been Over 2.5 Goals in three of the last five meetings between these two. It’s 8/11 for the same outcome here.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing