Liverpool vs Everton: Trent Arnold, Richarlison battle for supremacy
Sportsbet.io brings you the three biggest battles from this midweek fixture at Anfield in the Premier League when Liverpool take on their neighbours Everton.
The midweek in Premier League offers an enticing Merseyside derby as Liverpool, who are charging like a raging bull, welcome their struggling neighbours Everton to Anfield. The current European champions sit atop the league standings with 13 wins out of 14 games played this season, and are revelling in the insurmountable arrogance of an unbeaten home record at home since April 2017.
Everton, on the other hand, have one win in their last four league encounters and sit 17th on the points table, two points above the relegation zone. Marco Silva is the latest Premier League manager in line to face the sack, and a defeat at Liverpool will spell the end of his association with the Toffees.
TRENT ALEXANDER-ARNOLD vs RICHARLISON
The Liverpool right-back has been operating at an unfathomable level for his age, with the 21-year-old already tipped to break Paul Scholes’ record of assists. The blistering defender is a phenomenon on the right flank and has registered five assists in the league this term, of which two were in the 2-1 win against Brighton and Hove Albion this weekend.
Richarlison, on the other hand, has been inconsistent for Everton this season with just four goals in 14 matches. Considered as an attack leader for the Toffees, the Brazilian has a 30% shot accuracy rate and must re-energize himself to counter the rigidity of the Liverpool defence, and Trent Alexander-Arnold in particular.
JORDAN HENDERSON vs GYLFI SIGURDSSON
Henderson, in the absence of the injured Fabinho, must dictate proceedings in the engine room. The Liverpool captain has averaged 41.54 passes per game and has registered a 64% tackle success rate from 13 games. With a congested schedule up ahead, Henderson must avoid complacency and propel to enjoy their ascendancy in the Premier League title race.
Sigurdsson, meanwhile, has been more productive in aiming for goal with 25 shots, of which 11 have been on target. The Icelandic midfielder may have just one goal and assist this term, and with 49 crosses and 11 accurate long balls, the Everton number 10 must deliver a formidable performance on Thursday.
ROBERTO FIRMINO vs YERRY MINA
Firmino has had to shift dynamics at Liverpool this term, operating as a false nine rather than an out-and-out striker. The Brazilian has four goals and three assists in 14 games so far, with a shot accuracy of 42%. Although Firmino has created seven big chances, he has failed to convert eight scoring opportunities, and the 28-year-old must rediscover his scoring instincts at Anfield this midweek.
The Everton defence has leaked 22 goals this season, and the pressure thus falls upon Yerry Mina to stage a defensive masterclass against Liverpool. The Colombian centre-back has picked up two clean sheets, made 18 key interceptions and 56 clearances in the process. Mina has registered 70 recoveries and has won 74 duels and 50 aerial battles, thus, the 25-year-old is tipped to shut down any attacking approach of Liverpool.
Words: Ritvik Mawkin