Saturday, May 04, 2013

Match Preview: Liverpool vs Everton

Liverpool play host to Everton aiming to close the gap on their neighbours as both sides look to claim local bragging rights.

Brendan Rodgers' side welcome their city rivals across Stanley Park on Sunday knowing defeat will ensure that they will be unable to finish above David Moyes' men.

Everton sit five points clear of Liverpool with three games to go - on course to finish above Liverpool for the second season in a row.

Liverpool is unbeaten in the past five meetings between the clubs and they will go into the game on a high after their impressive 6-0 win over Newcastle last time out.

Everton retain slim hopes of finishing in the top four as they are currently five points behind fourth-placed Arsenal.

Everton have recent history against them as Moyes has not won any of his 11 previous visits to Anfield with the Toffees last tasting victory at the home of their local rivals 14 years ago.

Liverpool will again be without striker Luis Suarez as he serves the second game of his ten-match suspension.

Daniel Sturridge, who scored twice in last weekend's demolition of Newcastle, will lead the line in Suarez's absence as he makes his Merseyside derby debut.

Fabio Borini made a successful return from injury when he came off the bench to score at Newcastle and he is likely to start on the bench again.

Martin Kelly and Joe Allen are out for the rest of the season, whilst Raheem Sterling also remains sidelined and is unlikely to be involved.

Jamie Carragher will play in his final Merseyside derby before he hangs up his boots at the end of the season.

Everton are waiting on the fitness of midfielder Darron Gibson after he missed last weekend's win over Fulham with hip and thigh problems.

Tony Hibbert will keep his place in the squad after making his return to the fold on the bench last weekend following calf surgery.

Everton boss David Moyes has no other injury concerns to deal with, but he must decide who will lead his attack with Nikica Jelavic and Victor Anichebe both vying to start up front.

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