Everton snatch late derby draw

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Steven Gerrard scored the opener for Liverpool in the derby against Everton. Pic © David Rawcliffe/Propaganda

Steven Gerrard scored the opener for Liverpool in the derby against Everton. Pic © David Rawcliffe/Propaganda

A stunning equaliser by Everton captain Phil Jagielka earned his side a 1-1 draw against Liverpool at Anfield, as he silenced the Kop in injury-time.

His 25-yard thunderbolt drive cancelled out Steven Gerrard’s excellent free kick just after the hour mark, and denied the Reds yet another home win over their city rivals in the 223rd Merseyside derby.

Jagielka will long be remembered by Toffees fans for the goal, and he told BT Sport afterwards: “To go 1-0 down and keep knocking at the door showed tremendous character.

“The lads need to keep playing the same way, keep having the courage to do the right things and hopefully this will be a kick-start to the season for us.”

A frustrated Gerrard admitted: “I think Phil Jagielka’s got them out of the jail at the end with an absolute wonder strike. That’s the type you hit once in your career, so credit to him for that but on the 90 minutes, with the chances we created, we’re disappointed not to take three points.”

In a lively opening, there were two very early penalty shouts for both sides. Firstly Romelu Lukaku felt he was pulled down by Alberto Moreno, then at the other end Gareth Barry, who was booked in the first minute, blocked Raheem Sterling’s goal-bound shot with his arm but referee Martin Atkinson waved away all the appeals.

Liverpool had the first real chance when Adam Lallana escaped his marker from Gerrard’s corner and powered his header towards goal, only to be denied by a sprawling Tim Howard.

Everton’s first real attempt came in the 21st minute as Lukaku turned well just outside the Liverpool box and worked the ball on to his left foot but was denied by his fellow Belgian international Simon Mignolet in the Liverpool goal.

Shortly afterwards Everton were forced in to an early change after Kevin Mirallas was taken off with what looked like a hamstring injury, with Aiden McGeady replacing him.

Everton captain Phil Jagielka denied Liverpool at Anfield. Pic © David Rawcliffe/Propaganda

Everton captain Phil Jagielka denied Liverpool at Anfield. Pic © David Rawcliffe/Propaganda

Liverpool finished the half the much stronger team and Howard came to Everton’s rescue on more than once occasion, but Brendan Rodgers’ side could not find a breakthrough until the 64th minute.

A free kick was given after Leighton Baines was judged to have brought down Mario Balotelli 20 yards from the Everton goal and skipper Gerrard once again stepped up and calmly curled a shot into the back of the net, despite Howard’s best efforts to palm the ball out.

Two minutes later, the Reds had an amazing chance to double their lead as Sterling did well to beat Tony Hibbert on the left side and his cross found Balotelli in the middle but the Italian forward’s volley hit the crossbar.

Everton finally managed to create a sustained amount of pressure for the last 10 minutes of the match but were still not finding the killer ball, or forcing the keeper to make any real saves.

In the 92nd minute, Everton got their reward. McGeady’s cross into the box was headed clear by Dejan Lovren but only as far as Jagielka, who unleashed a rocket into the top corner of Mignolet’s net off the crossbar.

Everton nearly stole their first victory at Anfield for 15 years even deeper into added time when a dangerous low driven free-kick by Baines found Barry, but he could only flick the ball narrowly wide of the near post.

About Adam Jones, JMU Journalism