Editorials — October 29, 2012 20:26

Everton v Liverpool : Yuvraj Nirwal A Fan’s View From Goodison Park

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This article was sent into us by Yuvraj Nirwal who went to Goodison Park for yesterday’s game. Below are his experiences at the game, which will provide you with an insight into what it was like being at the hotly contested Merseyside derby.

Everton v Liverpool (28.10.12)

They say that life begins at thirty. Never could this be more poignant as it was a 30th birthday present that got me tickets to see my first Merseyside derby at Goodison Park on Sunday.

It felt a little odd to walk past Anfield and into Goodison. It was an odd experience like going into some bizarre opposite world where instead of seeing a sea of red, it was a sea of blue. This was the chance to fulfill a lifelong dream and experience, first hand, the ‘friendly derby’.

The game started well for us, the youngsters settled into the match well. I felt nervous as inexperience is quickly exploited in games such as these and with Jones, Wisdom, Sterling, Suso, Allen, Sahin and the manager all making their derby debuts it looked like we could be left vulnerable.

We passed the ball crisply but the most notable moment was Mirallas carrying the ball into the box, only for Agger to make the crucial interception. The own goal came from some good work on left and the most telling moment for both Suso and Enrique during the match. Baines was unlucky that the ball went in of him as it could have gone anywhere. The header from Suarez was an excellent finish for someone as erratic as him but the finish was nowhere near as good as the first goal celebration.

Unfortunately, I think the lack of experience eventually told. As good as Sterling has been he still has much to learn as he frequently failed to help out his full back against a very tricky winger in Mirallas. Wisdom, will have more afternoons like this and they will aid his development but I felt he was sold short by Sterling’s lack of awareness to track back and double up.

Everton were direct and we struggled to negate the growing aerial influence of Fellaini, despite Joe Allen’s gallant effort, who was often outsized. It was reminiscent of the Roy Evans days as every time the ball came into the box there seemed to be wholesale panic in the penalty box. Everton did well to come back into the match but you could not help thinking that we could have avoided conceding those goals, which were ruthlessly exposed by Everton.

Rodger’s tactical switch didn’t seem to work. We went direct, trying to hit Wisdom on the right and when that failed we turned to the left to hit Sterling. As a result we ceded all control to Everton who took control of the game for large periods. Another switch and the introduction of Henderson for Wisdom bought more balance and control to the team. I would like to see more of Henderson, he is technical, has premiership experience and is the U21 captain. I believe he has a lot to offer and can adapt to the new way of life at Liverpool, I hope he gets his chance. The game was in the balance and could have easily gone either way, we did win it as it was never offside – the decisions don’t seem to be going our way at the moment.

As for being the ‘friendly derby’ it was anything but. Moyes critique of diving (Suarez) in the game did nothing to calm hostility towards the forward who was subject to missiles being thrown onto the ground. Ironically, it was Moyes’s captain who would be booked for diving.

A great game, a great atmosphere, towards the end, some fan let off two flares while another let off a banger, but as for Liverpool, the project goes on. We need some more nous at times but that will come with time.

Yuvraj Nirwal

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