Liverpool v Everton: Match Preview

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Liverpool v Everton; Premier League; Anfield; Tues, 13th Match; 2000 KO.

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Steven Gerrard is expected to return to the Liverpool starting line-up for tonight’s Merseyside derby, having impressed off the bench against Sunderland at the weekend.

Andy Carroll and Stewart Downing are also in contention, while Glen Johnson is set for a fitness check at some stage today. Daniel Agger is out with a cracked rib, and continues on the sidelines with midfielder Lucas.

For Everton, winger Steven Pienaar is once again available after missing out against his parent club Tottenham at the weekend.

Jack Rodwell and Phil Jagielka are in contention to start after coming off the bench against Spurs, but Darron Gibson’s knee injury means he will again miss out.

Dalglish braced for ‘massive’ derby

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish admits tonight’s 217th Merseyside derby is ‘massive’ after a poor run of league form for the red half of Merseyside.

Three successive defeats – against Manchester United, Arsenal and Sunderand – means the Toffees could overtake the Reds with a victory at Anfield tonight.

And, with David Moyes celebrating ten years in charge of his side, Dalglish knows his players must be at their best to get the victory and keep their faint top four hopes alive.

"For us it's a massive game. It's a great game to play in and there will be a fantastic atmosphere. Anybody involved in football knows derby matches are special," ‘King Kenny’ told the official Liverpool website.

"We know how big it is and how much enjoyment the people get from winning it. If you win you get to enjoy it and you get the bragging rights for the city. But both teams come straight out of it into FA Cup sixth round ties at the weekend.

"There's not much time to sit back and rest on your laurels and neither would you want to. But I'm sure everyone would get a fair bit of enjoyment from a positive result. Everyone has to take responsibility and everyone needs to stand up and be counted. Let's stand together and see what we can do."

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