Coutinho inspires Liverpool to derby victory over Everton

Monday, 3 April 2017 00:30 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Liverpool’s Divock Origi (hidden) celebrates scoring their third goal with team mates - Action Images via Reuters


  • Liverpool makes it 17 league matches unbeaten at Anfield

Reuters: Philippe Coutinho inspired Liverpool to a comfortable 3-1 home win over Everton in the 228th Merseyside derby on Saturday to move provisionally up to third in the Premier League.

Sadio Mane’s opener was cancelled out by Matthew Pennington’s first Everton goal, but strikes from Coutinho and substitute Divock Origi confirmed Liverpool’s league double over their neighbours.

Liverpool had not lost in their last 12 league derbies and took the lead in the eighth minute when Sadio Mane exploited poor Everton defending to net his 13th goal of the season, playing a one-two with Roberto Firmino and holding off two opponents before firing low past Joel Robles.

Everton were without injured defenders Ramiro Funes Mori and Seamus Coleman their unfamiliar back line struggled to cope with Liverpool’s attackers. But Everton’s Pennington marked his first appearance of the season with an equaliser against the run of play in the 28th minute, prodding home from a corner after Dejan Lovren’s clearance.

Anfield paid tribute to late Liverpool coach Ronnie Moran before the match and the emotion of the occasion carried over with Everton’s Ross Barkley lucky to escape a red card for a high tackle on Lovren in the 39th minute.

Mane was injured after a collision with Leighton Baines, but his replacement Origi scored three minutes after coming on with a thumping strike from outside the area after being played in by the outstanding Coutinho.

“The boys did everything,” Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp told Sky Sports after extending his 100 percent record in Merseyside derbies. “It’s a deserved win, we played good football and we coped well.”

Everton’s last league win at Anfield came in 1999, and Ronald Koeman’s side showed little sign of finding a way back into the match, with 21-goal top scorer Romelu Lukaku cutting an isolated and anonymous figure.