GOODISON PARK – Liverpool and Everton played out an entertaining and controversial 2-2 draw in today’s Merseyside derby without fans, as Virgil van Dijk left the game early and Richarlison saw red.
The game between the fierce foes was expected to have everything and it didn’t disappoint.
After allowing seven goals against Aston Villa the last time out, Liverpool got off to the best possible start after striker Sadio Mane, returning to the side after a COVID-19 positive test, gave the champions the lead in just the 3rd minute of play.
That perfect start, though changed minutes after when Van Dijk was forced off injured following a horrendous challenge from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and many believe the England No. 1 was lucky to stay on the pitch.Embed from Getty Images
Everton found an equalizer in the 19th minute when center back Michael Keane leaped above Fabinho to head home a James Rodriguez corner past Adrian.
The score was 1-1 at halftime.
Following the break, forward Mo Salah fired a loose ball into the bottom corner to give Liverpool the lead again in the 72nd minute, the but the league’s hottest striker, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, beat his marker in the air yet again to pull the hosts level with nine minutes to play.
Everton was then reduced to 10-man when Richarlison saw a straight red for a terrible tackle on Thiago in stoppage time and then the drama continue moments later when Jordan Henderson saw his late winner pulled back by VAR for offside, leaving many still scratching their heads.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp’s reaction after the game during an interview on BT Sport, He spoke about that marginal offside call and the challenges on Virgil van Dijk and Thiago.
“The performance was top. It was a top game, a good game from both teams. We were clearly dominant against a side full of confidence. It was probably the best game we’ve played at Goodison since I’ve been at Liverpool.
“But it’s still 2-2 for different reasons.
“Pickford kicks Van Dijk completely. I didn’t see it back but I saw Henderson’s goal from Sadio’s pass… I didn’t see offside. Maybe someone can explain it to me.
“It’s not just a red card on Thiago, it’s a messy foul and now we don’t know what [injury] he has. It looks not good to be honest.”