Everton have come away from yet another Anfield derby

without the win they so badly crave, after wasting an

excellent opportunity to end their 11-year wait, going

down to a solitary goal scored by Dirk Kuyt.

 

In a typically passion-filled Merseyside derby, full of hefty

tackles, the Blues failed to make their neighbours pay

after finding themselves in a very promising position. Facing ten men with the score goalless after the sending off of Sotirios Kyrgiakos, for a two-footed lunge on Marouane Fellaini after half an hour, Everton could not make their one-man advantage count.

 

David Moyes will be left questioning the belief of his players that they could actually come away from Liverpool with all three points after a second-half performance that lacked both creativity and goalscoring chances. In as much as Liverpool were resilient in defence, Everton lacked any real penetration going forward throughout.

 

The visitors could not convert their greater possession into any clear chances, with the exception of Tim Cahill heading over the bar from six yards just before the break. Liverpool did make it hard for the Toffees and even the introduction of Mikel Arteta, Victor Anichebe and Yakubu could not provide the catalyst for any effective attacking play.

 

Indeed, Everton were made to pay for not taking advantage of the extra man when Kuyt flicked home a Steven Gerrard corner ten minutes after the interval. However, even after this setback, the onslaught that Evertonians would have expected when playing against ten men never really materialised.

 

This performance will no doubt infuriate Moyes, whose side's nine-match unbeaten run now comes to an end, with the optimism gained from recent results going into this harsh run of fixtures badly damaged. To add insult to injury, Steven Pienaar will now serve a one-match suspension after receiving a second yellow card near full-time after a collision with Gerrard, whilst Fellaini was taken off on a stretcher following the tackle by Kyrgiakos.

 

Moyes and his players will now have to get this lacklustre performance out of their systems quickly if they are to get anything from the forthcoming home matches against Chelsea and Manchester United. If Everton were to come out of this daunting month with any real opportunity of troubling the European contenders rather than finishing in mid-table, something had to be taken out of this fixture.

 

The Blues now lie 12 points behind their local rivals and are still some way off the top six. The win and the bragging rights again remain with the red half of Merseyside, whilst Everton’s wait for a victory at Anfield will go on for at least another season after they failed to capitalise on this outstanding chance.

 

 

Everton blow chance to end Anfield agony

By David Downie

Sports Reporter

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The red card for Sotirios Kyrgiakos (16); Tim Cahill missed Everton's only real opening

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