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Ancelotti on Everton transfers, his friendship with Klopp and ending the Toffees’ Liverpool hoodoo

It’s been a very long time since the Toffees came out on top in a derby

Everton v West Bromwich Albion - Premier League Photo by Nick Potts - Pool/Getty Images

Carlo Ancelotti says his Everton plays have no doubts as to the importance of their clash with Liverpool, as the Toffees look to secure a long awaited win over the Reds.

Saturday will mark exactly 10 years since Everton’s last victory over their near neighbours, a 2-0 win at Goodison Park under David Moyes.

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Everton v Liverpool - Goodison Park Photo by Nick Potts/PA Images via Getty Images

Seamus Coleman played in that game, less than a year after his £60,000 move from Sligo Rovers.

Ten years on and Coleman is now club captain, though Ancelotti insists he does not need to remind the players about the game’s significance.

“[Coleman] doesn’t need to speak to his team-mates for them to know how important this game is

“Everyone knows how important this derby is. Everyone knows how important this game is for this period, we want to keep this period good for the future.”

Merseyside derbies are often preceded with a war-of-words between the two managers, particularly during the Moyes-Benitez era, but the relationship between the two current bosses couldn’t be more different.

Jurgen Klopp spoke warmly about his Everton counterpart in his pre-match press conference, tipping Everton to be the next challengers for title.

Ancelotti responded in kind when he was asked about his friendship with the German.

“I want to say thanks to him! To be a challenger for Liverpool could be really god for us. But Liverpool are doing so well, I think we are not so far but still far from them.

“We are good friends. I feel good when I am with him, we don’t have a lot of time of course to talk because we are really busy. He’s a fantastic man, he brings energy to me when I am with him. I have a lot of respect for him.”

Everton have been boosted by the news that their international contingent all reported back to Finch Farm fit and ready for selection, though Ancelotti says he will assess the players before choosing his team after what was a busy international break.

The Italian also played down the significance of Liverpool’s 7-2 thrashing against Aston Villa last time out, warning that they still pose a severe threat.

“I think every team has had players that played in the break, the important thing for us was they came back without problems. Maybe they are a little bit tired, so this could be a consideration to choose the line-up.

“We don’t have to think what happened in the last game, Liverpool as usual play with a lot of intensity and quality. This will be the opponent we play tomorrow, so we have to pay attention. We have to be confident to be able to show our quality.”

Friday is also the EFL transfer deadline, with Premier League clubs still able to do business with lower league sides.

There are more outgoings than incomings expected at Goodison, though Bournemouth’s Josh King continues to be linked with a switch to Merseyside.

When asked for an update Ancelotti, as expected, would not be drawn on speculation.

“Honestly, I’m not focused there on this moment. We are focused on the derby for tomorrow. Our director is working on this.”

Ancelotti also acknowledge what has been a difficult week for the people of Liverpool, with the city region forced to accepted stricter lockdown measures as coronavirus cases continue to rise.

“It’s a difficult period for everyone but the only thing we can do is to follow the protocol that the government give to us, to be patient & hope that everything will be okay as soon as possible”