After the international friendlies are out of the way, action will resume in the Barclays Premier League on the weekend. There are plenty of great games in store for fans, but none is bigger than the Everton vs. Liverpool clash on Saturday afternoon. With both sides in the table’s top seven, there is plenty at stake in this Merseyside clash. Brenden Rodgers and Roberto Martinez will go head to head for the first time in these respective jobs, and the clash will set the tone for both clubs’ seasons.
Despite Everton being in a good position in the Barclays Premier League table, Liverpool are favorites for this clash. They are a much improved side under Rodgers, especially compared to Dalglish and Hodgson’s tenures. Moreover, the front pairing of Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez is producing a lot of goals. Everton are going to have to be at their best if they are to get anything from this clash.
One change that Roberto Martinez has made to Everton is in their playing style. They always got good wins under David Moyes, but there was no natural style to Everton’s play. Under Martinez, they are a predominantly short passing unit. They monopolize possession and look to play aesthetically pleasing football. However, this can result in them over complicating things and losing possession in dangerous areas.
Bookmakers are unsure about how this game will turn out. Liverpool are the slight favorites at 2.5, while Everton are out at 2.8. The draw is priced at 3.3, which means that anything could happen in this game. The smart bet would be on a Liverpool win. They have a great record against Everton in all competitions, and 2.5 is a decent bet to put on them. Martinez might have done well so far as Everton boss, but this is one clash that he will not be used to. The pace, power, intensity, and passion of the fans will be new to him, and he will be in for a baptism of fire. Moreover, Everton have a mental problem against Liverpool. They have struggled to perform in recent fixtures against their Anfield rivals.