Two Blues make combined Liverpool-Everton XI - according to 2022/23 season stats
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The two teams played out an exciting, albeit goalless draw at Goodison Park in September, but the Toffees will feel confident for the first time in a long time following their brilliant 1-0 win over league leaders Arsenal last weekend, which ended a run of nine games without a win.
For Liverpool, they’ll have to produce a far better performance than the one at Molineux last week, as they were swept aside 3-0 by Wolverhampton Wanderers - a defeat that leaves him languishing in 10th place.
Typically, Liverpool have dominated this fixture at Anfield having only lost three times at home since 1995. The most recent win during the 2020/21 season as Carlo Ancelotti’s side edged out a injury-struck Liverpool to end a 21-year wait for a victory.
With that in mind, we’ve made a combined XI (minimum 500 minutes played) from the official WhoScored average ratings ahead of the derby.
GK - Alisson (6.94)
The Brazilian has been one of Liverpool’s best players this season as he’s reaffirmed his place among the best keepers in Europe. Whilst Liverpool’s defence and midfield have allowed more shots than the last few seasons, Alisson has been up to the task earning two man-of-the-match performances alongside an assist for Mohamed Salah in the 1-0 win over Manchester City earlier this season.
RB - Trent Alexander-Arnold (6.80)
This season has seen a drop-off both attacking and defensively for the right-back, having only managed one goal and one assist in the league so far. Despite that, he still averages high for key passes, passes total, crosses and long balls, but there’s certainly plenty of room for improvement.
CB - James Tarkowski (6.96)
One of two Everton players to make the team, Tarkowski has tried to stem the flow of goals Everton have conceded this year and his aerial ability and determination have prevented them from being in an even worse position. He ranks in the top 15 centre-backs in Europe for clearances per game (5.3) and last week’s winner against Arsenal was a perfect way to help his former boss start with a win.
CB - Virgil Van Dijk (6.79)
Whilst this hasn’t been anywhere near his best season for Liverpool, the Dutch international has managed 4.1 clearances per game and over four long balls per 90. He’s also played the most minutes of any centre-back at the club, whilst the other options have all struggled with injury and form.
LB - Andrew Robertson (6.77)
Another player who has been a driving force for the Reds over the years, Robertson has been inconsistent this season but maintained his attacking output, leading the squad with five assists. Plus, he ranks highly for key passes too but his defensive contributions have left much to be desired. Again, another player who can certainly improve over the course of the rest of the season.
CM - Amadou Onana (6.84)
The second Everton player to make the list, Onana has been a very welcome addition since joining in the summer. His presence has helped add some steel in midfield and he’s primed to become a key player under Dyche. His 2.6 tackles per game and 84.9% pass success rate coupled with the fact he is fouled nearly twice a match shows his all-round game and he’s only going to improve given he’s still only 21.
CM - Thiago (6.95)
Liverpool’s midfield has been the focus of heavy criticism this season, but Thiago has quietly been very effective. Defensively, he averages near three tackles per game, but he was caught last week not tracking Ruben Neves for Wolves’ third goal on the break. On the ball he’s averaged six long balls a game and registered a high pass success rate, but he hasn’t contributed to any goals or assists so far.
RM - Mohamed Salah (6.87)
In what is a quiet season for the mercurial forward, his seven goals and four assists are seen as a failure by some fans. But that still places him in the top 10 for goal contributions in the league and he boasts the highest shots per game and key passes in the squad. Although, one goal in six will be worrying for fans.
LM - Luis Diaz (7.28)
Having only played just over 600 minutes this season due to injury, he’s been one of Liverpool’s brightest players. Still awaiting his return, the Reds are missing his dynamism and electric pace, as he managed three goals and two assists in just seven starts at the start of the season. There’s no doubt Liverpool are a better team with him in it and the sooner he returns, the better.
ST - Roberto Firmino (7.20)
Seen as surplus to requirements by most fans and pundits this summer, Firmino has stepped up when the likes of Diogo Jota and Darwin Nunez haven’t, scoring seven goals and providing three assists this year. His form may even warrant a new deal as his experience and familiarity with Klopp’s style of play make him a key asset to have in the squad.
ST - Darwin Nunez (6.84)
The much maligned forward has certainly been inconsistent this season. However, his industry, pace and aggression have seen him cause a lot of problems for defences since joining from Benfica. Yes, he tops the ‘Big Chances Missed’ list, but the positions he’s got himself into and his xG prove that at some point the tide will turn for the Uruguayan.
Here’s a look at the final team - do you agree with their ratings?