Merseyside Derby 16/1/11


Liverpool 2-2 Everton. Meireles opened the scoring for the home side before The Blues score two in the first ten minutes of the second half, Distin and Beckford with Everton’s goals. Tim Howard brought Maxi down in the box for Kuyt to convert the penalty.

Okay, from an Everton point of view, I’m reluctantly accepting of this result. We’ve had trouble winning the bigger games away from home but this was probably the perfect time to end that run. Especially considering Liverpool’s poor run of form. And even though the return of Kenny Dalglish to Anfield has the red side excited about their future, the fact remains that his record isn’t so great. Two defeats and now this draw, it’s not great by any means. Perhaps he needs time? Leonardo didn’t need much time to re-jolt  Inter Milan back to winning ways, he’s on four wins from four after replacing former Red’s manager Rafael Benitez.

Anyway, back to the game. At the end of the day I’ll take the draw. Everton seemed to just capitulate after going one down. But for a good save from Howard soon after Meireles’ goal the result could have been very different. The half time whistle eventually came and not a moment too soon for The Toffees.

And in the interval it was clear that David Moyes tore through his players. Whatever he said clearly made a lasting impression on them as they ran back onto the pitch for the second half, as only 45 or so seconds after the restart the teams were level from Distin meeting Arteta’s corner with his head, and I scared the shit out of my dog while shouting “Yes!” in celebration. The poor thing hadn’t a clue what was going on, much like Liverpool as The Blues began to take a stranglehold on the game. Everton then went  one up from some beautiful control in the box by Osman to feed former League 1 extraordinaire Beckford to cooly finish.

Liverpool equalized after what was admittedly a fair penalty, no arguments really. What followed was some half chances back and forth, up and down the pitch. Neither team really looked like they were definitely going to take all three points, but both were going for it.

Dinyar Bilyaletdinov has been frustrated from a lack of playing time recently. Before today I was of the persuasion that he should be given more starts or at least come on earlier. But after seeing what he mustered up in his cameo today I wouldn’t be very disappointed if he left. He lost the ball on numerous occasions and gave away needless free kicks in injury time allowing Liverpool to thump the ball into the box.

On the other side, Fernando Torres was impressive. He gave the Blues’ defense a lot of problems that they sometimes weren’t able to deal with, as he hit the post in the first half while still at 0-0. He looked vastly improved to his lack of performance against Manchester United only a week ago, and perhaps on the way back to his best.

Man Of The Match: Marouane Fellaini. Won the ball plenty of times in midfield and helped his team out all over the pitch.

Moment Of The Match: Distin’s header very early in the second half to equalize. It gave Everton a real footing in the game and the belief to go on and attack, resulting in it being a greatly enjoyable derby.

Distin celebrating after scoring.

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