Everton’s best performance at Anfield for 20 years (Jamie Carragher’s words, not mine) was rewarded by the freakiest 96th minute goal of all-time.
It was all just a bit too Everton.
Anyway, what did the numbers tell us about what was a largely positive performance?
Another last-minute defeat to Liverpool
I don’t normally include these type of statistics, but it tells the Everton derby story too well:
Lookman’s Time to Shine
Sub completes more key passes and dribbles than Walcott
While it wasn’t surprising that Marco Silva stuck to his winning formula for the trip to Anfield, there was a familiar storyline of Theo Walcott being fairly anonymous and Ademola Lookman impressing from the bench.
When he headed off on the hour mark, Theo Walcott had AGAIN (for the eighth game in a row) had the fewest touches of any outfield Everton player. Walcott managed 25 touches in the ball in 60 minutes, with Lookman running him close with 18 in just 30 minutes.
What’s more, Lookman also managed more key passes, dribbles, tackles, interceptions during his cameo than Walcott managed in his hour.
It would be a massive shock if Lookman didn’t come in for Walcott for Wednesday’s clash against Newcastle, with a few other changes (Tosun/Calvert-Lewin) likely to be in the offing as we enter the busy Christmas schedule. If he puts in a performance, the position will be his to lose.
Silva > Allardyce
Blues manage more shots than last two trips to Anfield combined
Despite the result, this was without doubt the best Everton performance at Anfield for a long, long, long time.
Indeed, over the two games at Anfield last season (a 1-1 draw in the league and 2-1 defeat in the cup), Everton managed a combined total of just seven shots. Under Silva, Everton managed nine in one game.
Plus, the 42% of possession that Everton had was significantly more than any of three clashes against Liverpool last season. In the FA Cup clash in January, Allardyce’s Everton had just 21% of the ball.
Pickford Top Class
First error leading to a goal in league for Everton
Sunday wasn’t Jordan Pickford’s finest performance for Everton. His kicking game was somewhat off and obviously there was that goal. But in the first half, he’d also produced a top-quality stop to prevent Shaqiri from scoring when clean through and had done enough to put Sadio Mane off a couple of times too.
Remarkably, the last-gasp blunder was the first error Pickford has made for Everton that has led to a goal in his 52 Premier League appearances. These are some of the safest hands in the league.
Not Gueye’s Day
Pass success rate of just 76.9% for midfielder
Idrissa Gana Gueye has been excellent for Everton this season, but, like Pickford, didn’t have the best of days at Anfield.
The Senegalese midfielder was caught in possession a few times and offered a pass success rate of just 76.9% - well below his average 84.9% this season. Surely just a blip rather than a concern though.