The Merseyside Derby Preview: Everton vs Liverpool Premier League 2020–21

Ancelotti vs Klopp (Picture: Sky Sports)

The City of Liverpool has seen Football being dominated by the club synonymous with the city, who are also the reigning champions of the Premier League. But in this new-look Everton side resurgent under Carlo Ancelotti, Liverpool finally have a Merseyside Derby with high stakes to look forward to this weekend.

It is not Liverpool, but Everton who is topping the league table after four rounds of matches. There are a number of factors for Everton’s brilliant start, the key ones being the passion and spirit Ancelotti has brought to the dressing room, coupled with the trio of midfield recruits in James Rodriguez, Abdoulaye Doucouré, and Allan. Rodriguez has been particularly impressive, linking up brilliantly with Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison, helping Everton to the most goals in the league so far, tied to Leicester City.

The international break couldn’t have come at a better time for Liverpool, who received a 7–2 thrashing from Aston Villa that will be remembered for ages in English Football. The break has allowed key players Sadio Mane and Thiago Alcantara to recover from their Covid-19 bouts and should be fit to play in this high-intensity encounter. Their goalkeeper Alisson, though, is still out with a shoulder injury, allowing Adrian another game with the gloves.

The game briefly seemed under doubt after the announcement of the highest tier of England’s new lockdown system to tackle the coronavirus. But Everton’s head of communications, Scott McLeod, has confirmed that the match at Goodison Park will go ahead as scheduled:

“Given the intensive testing program, the training bubbles, and the extensive protocols we have in place — both at the training ground and on matchdays — at this stage we are not anticipating any impact on Saturday’s game from any increase in local restrictions that may be implemented.”

We have an exciting, unpredictable Merseyside Derby in store for us, with plentiful of goals and drama expected. To join in the fun, and engage in some quality, friendly banter, the Football Fan App has created an exclusive Banter Room for the fans of Everton and Liverpool.

Predicted Everton Starting XI — (4–3–3)

Jordan Pickford; Seamus Coleman, Yerry Mina, Michael Keane, Lucas Digne; Tom Davies, Abdoulaye Doucouré, Gylfi Sigurdsson; James Rodriguez, Richarlison, Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Predicted Liverpool Starting XI — (4–3–3)

Adrian; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joseph Gomez, Virgil van Dijk, Andrew Robertson; Fabinho, Thiago Alcantara, Georginio Wijnaldum; Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane.

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