I write this piece on the recent Merseyside derby with a little trepidation as one of my twitter pals is a staunch Evertonian.
You might think that I’d be loving that fact, but he’s actually a rather nice guy so unfortunately it’s not that easy to “enjoy the moment”. However, I couldn’t let the opportunity pass by completely, so here’s my poor attempt to bask in the glory.
Built up as the most important Merseyside derby for thirty years, this match wasn’t just about bragging rights but could decide the all-important Champions League places with Red and Blue separated by just a single point, a situation both teams hadn’t been in for a while now.
Both teams went into the derby with injuries to key players, making the outcome that more difficult to predict, although many attempted anyway.
I was a nervous wreck, and seeing Ross Barkley’s name in Everton’s starting line-up only increased that emotion. What seemed certain were lots of goals and a close match. But no one could have foreseen this result.
With twenty minutes gone, step up Mr Steven Gerrard, 1-0 Liverpool. (This was the bit where Everton get back in the game.)
But Daniel Sturridge had other ideas. Two back-to-back fabulous ideas in fact. Everyone, including myself, shamefully, was still expecting a leaky Liverpool defence to let Everton back in the game at some point and make viewing for all Red fans unbearable.
With half time fast approaching, the home team were put under increasing pressure at the back yet somehow stood firm and went in to have their oranges 3-0 up.
The second half began where it ended, with Liverpool camped in their own penalty box and it looked like only a matter of time before Everton spoilt the so-far-clean sheet. Enter Luis Suárez.
Or should I say Phil Jagielka. Either or. What does it matter when the ball ends up in the back of the net and the score becomes 4-0?
At this point you could be forgiven for thinking I was relaxed and enjoying the game. No. I wanted a clean sheet and despite some sustained pressure from the visitors, Liverpool’s sheet was cleaner than one from a Daz advert.
All in all an impressive all-round display from Liverpool providing some much needed breathing space from the teams below.