Everton have been in scintillating form this season and will hope to continue that run when they take on Liverpool in the Merseyside derby this Saturday. The Toffees are leading the table if you consider games in the second half of the season and could give their arch-rivals a real push at Anfield.
Everton haven’t won at Anfield for a long time and this is perhaps their best chance as Liverpool have been pretty shaky at the back and Everton themselves have been hitting the right notes in the last few months. With their attack, led by Romelu Lukaku, in good goal-scoring form, and Liverpool’s defence doing what they usually do, Ronald Koeman’s side can silence Anfield the Saturday afternoon.
The potential area of concern will be the injury to Seamus Coleman. His unfortunate injury in the international break means he’ll play no part this season and in his absence, Everton will miss a player who not only did his defensive duties well but also added some splendour to the attack from the right-hand side.
Here’s how the Everton could line up for the derby.
Joel Robles will be in goal and having replaced Stekelenburg, he has hardly allowed criticism to come his way. Against Mane, Firmino and Coutinho, he has to be at his best.
Coleman’s disastrous injury has ended his season and he will begin his recuperation leaving Holgate to deputise in his place. The Everton players would want to win the derby for Coleman and we can certainly see an added level of commitment from the players.
In the central defensive area, Williams and Jagielka will be stationed and the two of them will play a crucial role if the Toffees are to restrict the shots on the goal. Williams is slowly becoming the leader of the backline and will take the place of Jagielka next season onwards.
At left-back, Baines will look to juggle his roles of nullifying Mane and at the same time provide an attacking spark.
Schneiderlin is likely to miss out and we might see a double pivot of Gueye and Barry. Gueye will be up against his fellow national Sadio Mane but rest assured the pleasantries will be left for after the match.
Barry will bring in a level of composure and invaluable experience.
The in-demand Barkley is likely to be on the right-hand side and he will be Everton’s answer to Mane while the attacking trio will be completed by Mirallas and the impressive Davies who is likely to be in the No.10 slot.
Premier League’s highest scorer, Romelu Lukaku will play up front and with 21 goals already, Liverpool will be aware of what exactly the Belgian is capable of.