Premier League

Liverpool-Everton Preview

Everton boss Rafael Benitez has called on Everton's support to be at their best as the Toffees host rivals Liverpool in the Merseyside derby.

Benitez faces his former club on Wednesday and is in desperate need of a win, with Everton having gone seven league games without picking up a victory - their longest such run since 2016.

While Everton have dropped to 14th, Liverpool are flying high in second place and are all set for another title challenge under Jurgen Klopp.

Benitez was a contentious appointment at Everton but has urged the Goodison Park faithful to fully back the team.

"A derby is a derby, everything can change," he told a news conference. "It depends on the atmosphere, how well we can do, and the connection with the fans. If we can create a good atmosphere, anything can happen.

"A derby is always special. Here, the passion is massive; we know it's really important for everyone. I want to win and do well, for us as a team it's important to bring back the confidence.

"The fans are intelligent, they know we need them. They're crucial and the main thing for us. I think they will realise how important they are for the players.

"We have to stay focused, go back to the principle of defending as a unit. After, we try to play the best way possible on the ball, if we have to play counter-attack then do it."

Klopp expects a fierce test and raucous atmosphere.

The Liverpool manager said his team would need "a cool head," explaining: "We are still an emotional team, but you have to use the emotion in the right way and that's the plan for tomorrow absolutely.

"I think previous form matters, especially when it's good."

Everton - Richarlison

With Dominic Calvert-Lewin injured, the onus will fall on Richarlison to lead Everton's line. He did so brilliantly in February when the Toffees broke their long run without a derby win, scoring the opener in a 2-0 victory at Anfield.

Liverpool - Mohamed Salah

Mohamed Salah has either scored or assisted a goal in each of his last six away games in the Premier League (seven goals, five assists). No Liverpool player has ever registered a goal involvement in seven consecutive away appearances in the competition before.

- Only Salah (11) has scored more Premier League goals for Liverpool than Diogo Jota this season (seven), with the Portuguese forward bagging eight goals in his last 11 starts in the competition for the Reds.

- Benitez has won just one of his 10 Premier League games against sides he's previously managed (D3 L6), beating Chelsea 3-0 with Newcastle in May 2018. Meanwhile, former Liverpool managers have lost 13 of their last 14 Premier League games against the Reds, with Brendan Rodgers' Leicester winning 3-1 last season in the other.

- Liverpool lost their last away league game 3-2 at West Ham, but haven't lost consecutive Premier League games on the road since February 2017 (vs Hull and Leicester). However, the Reds have scored at least twice in each of their last nine Premier League away games, and could become just the second team to do so in 10 consecutive games in the competition after Manchester United (11 between June-December 2020).

- In Premier League history, Everton vs Liverpool has seen more red cards (22) and been drawn more often (24) than any other fixture. The Merseyside derby has also seen more 90th-minute winning goals than any other match in the competition, with all of these being scored by Liverpool - Ronny Rosenthal (1993), Gary McAllister (2001), Dirk Kuyt (2007), Sadio Mané (2016) and Divock Origi (2018).

- Everton won 2-0 in their last Premier League game against Liverpool, ending a 20-game winless run against them in the competition. They've not won back-to-back league Merseyside derbies since beating them in both meetings in the 1984-85 campaign.

Updated November 30, 2021

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