With the start of the second international break of this season, the majority of Premier League supporters are concentrating on the upcoming slate of games, which will have higher stakes because they will mark a more significant period of the season. The Merseyside Derby atmosphere is never dull, despite Everton and Liverpool consistently being on different ends of the table for nearly 20 years. While Everton is three points above the relegation zone as a result of a crucial 3-0 victory over Bournemouth, Jurgen Klopp is working to maintain the Reds in the title race as they now lie in fourth place, three points behind leaders Tottenham Hotspur.
The fact that Liverpool and Everton have comparable numbers and that Everton actually outperforms its neighbors by a small margin in terms of non-penalty predicted goals is possibly the most intriguing and important finding. However, the fact that they have a greater xGA (Expected Goals Against) is even more amazing. This is a very crucial aspect that the Reds should take into account because it may be the first time in a very long time that Everton aren’t the clear underdogs coming into a game.
The Merseyside Derby is usually of utmost importance, but because these two teams are always on opposing ends of the ladder, winning is extremely vital for Everton because Liverpool has always been a Big 6 threat. However, this season, with Klopp attempting to quickly return to playing UCL games and maintaining a title race dream, they undoubtedly want to win while keeping their long-term goals in mind.
In order to avoid the relegation war that has always surrounded Sean Dyche and his team in recent years, a win will help them move up the table and stay out of the bottom three.