Jan 28, 2014, 2:20 PM EDT
- The Merseyside derby has produced 20 red cards in PL history, more than any other fixture
- Romelu Lukaku has scored four goals in four PL appearances vs. Liverpool
- Everton have gone six games without beating Liverpool, but the last three have all been draws
This is it, what many are calling the biggest Merseyside derby in decades has arrived as Liverpool host Everton (Watch live on NBCSN, 3pm ET and online via Live Extra) at Anfield on Tuesday.
Both Merseyside clubs are enjoying fine seasons as Liverpool sit in fourth place on 43 points, while Everton are in sixth just one point behind.
A tussle to make the top four is well and truly on between these two fierce rivals.
At Anfield Liverpool have lost just once all season and they’re unbeaten in their last 13 home Merseyside derbies in the Premier League. The last time they lost to Everton was in 1999 when Kevin Campbell scored the lone goal.
For so often in recent times it’s the Red half of Merseyside that’s had bagging rights, but with new manager Roberto Martinez turning Everton into a sumptuous side full of flair and panache, Brendan Rodgers and his players will be wary of Everton strolling into Anfield and recording a famous victory.
Earlier this season the teams played out a pulsating 3-3 draw at Goodison Park as Liverpool let an early lead slip, but pinned Everton back right at the death as Daniel Sturridge’s late goal sealed a point.
With so much on the line in this Merseyside derby, perhaps we will see a tighter game. But I doubt it.
Make sure you tune in to watch this one, it will have huge implications on how the season pans out for either side, as well as capturing local pride until next season.
In team news Liverpool have plenty of defensive issues as Jose Enrique, Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson are all out, while Lucas Leiva is out long-term. Joe Allen and Mamadou Sakho are also struggling to shake off hamstring injuries.
Cissokho, Skrtel, Toure and Flanagan all start in a makeshift defense, while Suarez and Sturridge start up front.
While Everton also have a whole host of injuries worries but Ross Barkely, Phil Jagielka and Steven Pienaar all make the starting lineup. Bryan Oviedo is a long-term absentee after that horrific leg break last weekend, while new signing Lacina Traore wasn’t risked after nursing a hamstring injury.
Liverpool: Mignolet, Cissokho, Skrtel, Toure, Flanagan, Gerrard, Henderson, Coutinho, Sturridge, Sterling, Suarez. Subs: Jones, Kelly, Ibe, Smith, Moses, Aspas, Alberto
Everton: Howard, Baines, Jagielka, Mirallas, McCarthy, Lukaku, Barry, Barkley, Pienaar, Stones, Alcaraz. Subs: Robles, Hibbert, McGeady, Naismith, Gueye, Osman, Garbutt
- West Ham United 2-1 Manchester City: Hammers stun reigning champs 1
- WATCH: Premier League online via NBC Sports Live Extra – Week 9 0
- Chicago Fire 2-1 Houston Dynamo: Stoppage-time winner caps off Chicago comeback (VIDEO) 1
- Premier League Preview: Sunderland vs. Arsenal 0
- Still defending racial incident, seething at bite talk, Suarez returns for Barcelona 0
- Prince-Wright’s Premier League picks – Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool 0