Liverpool made changes and were extremely lethargic as Everton held them to a 0-0 draw at Goodison Park. But what were the key stats from what was an incredibly boring affair?
This was a game in which nobody really created a lot, with 0-0 probably the right scoreline. In terms of expected goals, Liverpool edged it 0.97 to 0.77, with both teams missing their one respective big chance. This was only the second time this season in a Liverpool game neither side has hit 1xG and their second-lowest combined xG, both behind the 2-1 defeat to Man United a few weeks ago.
In terms of creativity, only Idrissa Gueye, who came on in the second half, made an impact, with two key passes and 0.42xA. From a Reds’ perspective, only Henderson created more than one chance with two and our highest xA was Milner’s 0.12, with Solanke’s big chance a fluky rebound.
A few further stats to underline how dire this game was: there were only four shots on target, all of which were in the first half; there wasn’t a single booking (the first time since 1992 in a Merseyside Derby) and it took until the 68th minute for either side to register a shot in the second half.
This was Liverpool’s third 0-0 draw of the season in the PL, with Man United and West Brom both snatching 0-0s at Anfield. This was a very different game to those two, with Liverpool offering nowhere near as much going forward having made a lot of changes.
Unbeaten Run Continues
This is the sort of key stat that just keeps rolling. 15th league game unbeaten against Everton, the best record in the history of the derby. Everton haven’t beaten Liverpool in the league since 2010, and they really are the gift that keeps on giving.
Defence Continues to Improve
I highlighted the importance of the improvement by the defence in midweek, but once again this weekend Liverpool defended well, keeping another clean sheet to underline their resurgence in this area. The Reds now have seven clean sheets in their last ten games, conceding just four games in the ten since their 2-2 draw with Spurs. We’ve scored 24 over the same period, losing just once.
Loris Karius made a terrific save to deny Bolasie to continue his own fine personal form, notching his 11th clean sheet of the season, seven of those in LFC’s last ten games as mentioned. He’s conceded 18 goals in his 24 games in all competitions this season, which is an excellent record.
How important to all of this is Virgil Van Dijk? Well, he’s kept six clean sheets for Liverpool, six of those seven since Spurs, and Liverpool have conceded 11 goals in the 13 games he’s played. Less than a goal a game is still a big boost, but three of those came in one game with Mignolet in goal. As he does.
Solanke Woes Continue
Solanke missed the best chance of the match as Liverpool struggled to break through. This was Solanke’s fourth big chance of the season in the PL, all of which he’s now missed. At 3.30, Solanke has the 4th highest xG in the Liverpool team, but he’s yet to find the net. He’s becoming a big worry.