SUNDAY’S Merseyside Derby looks an enthralling encounter. Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) shares his best bets.
Everton v Liverpool | Sunday 13:30 | Sky Sports 1
Wow, this is tasty. And with so much at stake! Everton and Liverpool battle it out in another Merseyside Derby on Sunday with more scrutiny concentrated on the visitors.
Brendan Rodgers is a man receiving constant questioning over his job and position at the moment. Four points out of 12 in their last four league matches and a penalty shoot out win over Carlisle in the Capital One Cup have left the Northern Irishman on the brink.
Perhaps it’s a bit harsh when you consider Liverpool have lost the same number of games as league leaders Manchester City and Arsenal but that awful home defeat to West Ham and meek loss to Manchester United really haven’t helped.
On Sunday they come up against an Everton side who will hit the Top 3 if they win. It’s been a superb start to the season for Roberto Martinez’s side with comfortable wins over Chelsea and Southampton in their locker. The Goodison outfit have already come up against five of last season’s Top 8 so the fact they’re riding so high is huge credit to them.
Monday night’s comeback win over West Brom was further testament to their character and there’s no doubt they go into this game in better shape than their more illustrious rivals.
There’s one thing thwarting Everton though. Their record against Liverpool. Remarkably it’s 11 games and five years since the Toffees got the better of the Anfield side and that is surely more than just a coincidence?
Are Everton able to throw off the shackles of their inferiority complex on Sunday? Are they able to win in the league over Liverpool for only the third time in nine years? Let’s look at the odds.
On all known form it’s amazing that Liverpool look like going off favourites. The game is at Goodison and Everton’s form this season has been far superior, but what about that poor head to head record?
I’m willing to swallow hard and ignore that for the sake of getting involved at 15/8. Martinez showed two seasons ago that his side can mix it with the best when they finished fifth and we’ve seen hard evidence of that this time round.
Their dressing room will be buoyant, relaxed and pressure-free, the complete opposite of their rivals. Liverpool may have got back to winning ways last weekend but they still conceded two against a poor Aston Villa side. On paper a 3-2 home win over Tim Sherwood’s side is nothing very special.
On the evidence of what we’ve seen this season Everton should not be second favourites at 15/8 here on home turf. I just have to back them in this fascinating encounter.
Everton v Liverpool – Everton to win (15/8 BetVictor)
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