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|Match Result and Total Goals
|Everton and Over 3.5
|Everton and Under 3.5
|Liverpool and Over 3.5
|Liverpool and Under 3.5
Everton have struggled to find the net this term, and the Reds should be able to hold them at arm’s length.
Back Liverpool to win and under 3.5 goals (+130) in the first Merseyside derby of the season.
Pick made on 09/01/2022 at 08:12 PM EST
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Liverpool’s last two wins could hardly have been more different. Last weekend, they equalled a Premier League record by thrashing Bournemouth, the favorites for relegation according to the best online sportsbooks, by a stunning scoreline of 9-0. Having failed to win any of their first three fixtures, that demolition of the Cherries was a timely pick-me-up for Jurgen Klopp’s side, who will have been wary of falling out of the title race even at this early stage of the campaign.
Their win against Newcastle United on Wednesday was a much closer affair. Alexander Isak gave the visitors to Anfield the lead, before Roberto Firmino equalized shortly after the hour mark. Liverpool pushed for a winner thereafter but so did Newcastle, and their manager Eddie Howe was left fuming after Isak had a goal disallowed by the video assistant referee for a marginal offside call. Newcastle’s frustration was compounded when Fabio Carvalho notched the winner for Liverpool in the eighth minute of stoppage time.
It was a significant moment. It feels faintly ridiculous to make such statements so early in the season, but Manchester City’s relentlessness means that Liverpool would have had a mountain to climb had they not beaten Newcastle. A draw would have left them seven points behind the champions, who do not look like they are going to slow down any time soon.
Liverpool will now look to continue building momentum before the Premier League pauses later this month for Nations League matches and various pre-World Cup international friendlies. Everton, Wolves and Chelsea are their opponents before then, and Klopp will want a minimum of seven points from those contests – starting with three this weekend.
Everton are one of three Premier League teams yet to taste victory this term. They began the campaign with back-to-back 1-0 defeats by Chelsea and Aston Villa, before three consecutive 1-1 draws with Nottingham Forest, Brentford and Leeds United. Everton have shown plenty of grit and determination so far, but those two characteristics alone will not be enough for them to keep out of the bottom three.
In the end the summer transfer window worked out pretty well for the Toffees. Despite rumored interest from elsewhere, Anthony Gordon and Dominic Calvert-Lewin are still at the club. Richarlison did depart, but the proceeds from his sale helped to fund moves for Dwight McNeil, Amadou Onana and Neal Maupay, while the defense has been solidified with the signings of Conor Coady and James Tarkowski.
Then, on deadline day, Everton re-signed Idrissa Gueye from Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain and also acquired James Garner from Manchester United. Once all the new players have been integrated and everyone is fit (Calvert-Lewin is closing in on a return), Everton should have enough ability within the squad to begin climbing up the table.
If not, Frank Lampard will begin to fear for his job. The former Chelsea boss fulfilled his remit by keeping Everton in the Premier League last season, but he must now show he is the man to keep the club clear of a relegation battle this time around.
Everton fans have not had much to cheer over the last 12 months or so, but Goodison Park will be rocking on Saturday despite the early kick-off. Everton will leave their historic home at the end of the 2023/24 season, and although their new riverside stadium will provide much better facilities, it will struggle to replicate Goodison’s ferocious atmosphere for games like this. It is a throwback of a soccer ground and the Premier League will be a poorer place for its impending departure from the scene.
Unfortunately for Everton, raucous noise from the stands only gets you so far. It is certainly an asset over the course of a season, and the Toffees have been able to hold Liverpool to a draw in four of their last five matches at Goodison. But while this Everton team is willing, they do not have the quality to match opponents that look to be clicking into gear.
Liverpool won 4-1 at this ground last season, but that was an aberration. Merseyside derbies tend to be low-scoring, and we do not anticipate goals flying in at both ends this weekend. A Liverpool victory and under 3.5 goals looks like the way to go here.
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|Everton vs Liverpool
|Goodison Park, Liverpool, England
|Saturday, 3 September 2022, 7.30 AM EST
|How to watch
|USA Network, fuboTV
Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts. Email: [email protected]More info on Greg Lea
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