Premier League: Wounded Everton awaits title-chasing Liverpool

Second-placed Liverpool travels to Goodison Park to regain the Premier League top spot in the clash with Merseyside rival Everton.

Premier League: Wounded Everton awaits title-chasing Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool heads to Goodison Park for another test of its title credentials when it takes on Everton in an eagerly-awaited Merseyside derby on Sunday.

The Premier League leader was under pressure in Wednesday's home meeting with Watford following an exhilarating run of form from its closest rival Manchester City.

Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk scored braces in both halves as Liverpool recorded a thumping 5-0 victory that kept the side a point clear of second placed Manchester City.

READ | Mane: Call me Ronaldo!

On Sunday, the Reds will once again look to go past City, which defeated Bournemouth 1-0 on Saturday.

Everton will have regained some lost confidence with the 3-0 away win over Cardiff City mid-week after three losses on the bounce in the league.

Roberto Firmino remains an injury doubt for the short trip, although Divock Origi would hardly be a bad option given his role in Liverpool's previous meeting with its local rival.

He scored the last-minute winner that won the game at Anfield in December, following a disastrous mistake from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.

'World Cup final' jibe

Everton has won just four of its league games since that morale-sapping defeat, a state of affairs that prompted Klopp to describe the derby as representing a “World Cup final” for his rivals.

Jordan Pickford reacts after his costly error allowed Liverpool to manage a stoppage-time winner against Everton at Anfield in December. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Under-pressure Toffees boss Marco Silva hit back at Klopp recalling Liverpool's wild victory celebrations in the aftermath of Origi's winner.

“I didn't see a big difference. I managed my first Merseyside derby last December and what I felt was a special match for both teams,” said Silva.

“They celebrated that lucky goal -- that lucky moment they had in the last seconds of the match -- (like it) was the final of a World Cup for us and for them.”

READ | Silva backs Gylfi Sigurdsson to shine against Liverpool

Everton has not won any of its past 18 meetings in all competitions against leader Liverpool, a barren run that stretches back to 2010.

But Silva is confident Everton can put a dent in Liverpool's bid for a first English title since 1990 if it plays with freedom.

“We have to be ourselves, believe in ourselves. Of course it is a long period without a win for us as a football club. It shows us it is a difficult match,” he said.

“If we can perform at the level we did last December, it will be very good.”