English Premier League

Klopp’s Dream Farewell Turning Into Nightmare

One of the fiercest local rivalries in English soccer, the Merseyside derby, returned with a bang on Wednesday night (April 24), with Liverpool taking the short trip to Everton’s Goodison Park. In their previous meeting earlier this season, the Reds ran circles around the Blues at Anfield Stadium, securing a comfortable 2-0 victory. At Goodison, Everton returned the favor, clinching a 2-0 win against the Premier League aspirants. It marked their first victory over Liverpool at Goodison Park since October 17, 2010. That game also ended 2-0, with now Arsenal boss, Mikel Arteta, scoring Everton’s insurance goal.

Clinical Finishing & Jordan Pickford Take Everton Over The Line Against Liverpool

Toiling near the relegation zone, Everton needed a stellar performance to get something out of their game against their more accomplished rivals. Sean Dyche understood the assignment perfectly and set up his team to the best of his ability. Dominic Calvert-Lewin got the license to hound the Reds’ defenders while the likes of Jarrad Branthwaite and James Tarkowski took the fight to them in set-pieces.

Calvert-Lewin had the first stab at the Liverpool backline in the sixth minute as he won a penalty after tumbling inside the Reds’ box under pressure from Alisson. The referee pointed the spot right away but the VAR overturned his decision a couple of minutes later. Calvert-Lewin was adjudged to be in an offside position when he received the ball from Jack Harrison and barged into the box. The visitors created a couple of decent chances of their own in the following 10 minutes, but their finishing was not up to the mark.

Having been under the cosh, Everton put their noses in front in the 27th minute, thanks to Branthwaite’s sharp reflexes. Alisson did well to parry the center-back’s header from a free-kick. However, he could not hoof it out of danger. The ball found its way to Ben Godfrey, who attempted to poke it home. The ball once again encountered a few roadblocks and landed at Branthwaite’s feet, who had another go from close range. His shot slid underneath Alisson and went over the goalline before Calvert-Lewin smashed it in. Darwin Nunez, Luis Diaz, and Andy Robertson all tested the keeper before the referee blew the whistle for the end of the first half, but Jordan Pickford refused to surrender.

Just under the hour mark, Everton doubled their advantage, thanks to an unstoppable header from Calvert-Lewin. Dwight McNeil delivered an impeccable corner at the far post and the striker made use of his neck muscles to send the ball sizzling past the goalkeeper.

Diaz hit the post in the 69th minute while Harvey Elliott and Salah saw two excellent shots saved by Pickford at the death, capping off a disappointing night for the away fans.

Jurgen Klopp Could Endure A Disappointing End To His Final Season At Anfield

When Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp announced his decision to step down at the end of the season, his team were alive and well in all major cup competitions. They were the favorites to progress to the UEFA Europa League semi-final at Atalanta’s expense, were expected to blow Manchester United away in the FA Cup quarter-finals, and were in with a real opportunity to win the Premier League.

Over the last month and a half, everything took a turn for the worse. In mid-March, Manchester United beat them 4-3 in the FA Cup quarter-finals. Last week, they crashed out of the UEFA Europa League after suffering a 3-1 aggregate defeat to Atalanta. Now, they have slipped to second place in the Premier League rankings, having played two games more than third-placed Manchester City who are only a point behind. Even if the Cityzens slip, Liverpool would not have the advantage in the title race, as provision leaders Arsenal — sitting 3 points ahead — would pounce.

Thanks to the Carabao Cup win in February, Klopp will not end the season without a trophy. But it is unlikely to be the dream send-off every Liverpool fan was praying for.


Md Golam Mostafa Tutul Tutul

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