The 243rd edition of the Merseyside Derby will take place at a semi-build Anfield on Saturday afternoon, and the severity of the fixture for both teams remains high. 

For Liverpool, it’ll be a sweet way to rekindle their winning formula and and for Everton, it’s a chance to build on a recent serge of form but for both, it’s a chance for bragging rights in the city and the righteous chant about the colour of Liverpool. 

Jurgen Klopp’s changed Reds has taken the league by storm, and although the season is new, a sense of optimism has returned to Anfield, an optimism that was rapidly dampened following a plummet down the Premier League table and the inability to compete in the cup competitions in the 2022-23 season. 

A complete midfield revamp has taken shape and it’s worked out well thus far for Klopp, with Ryan Gravenberch, Alexis Mac Allister, Endo and Dominik Szoboszlai swapping their previous clubs for the Liverbird on their chest. All have played their part, but Szoboszlai, who arrived from RB Leipzig, has particularly been a huge bonus for Liverpool, with his performances being rightfully documented as he’s arguably been Liverpool’s best player this campaign, along with Allison and Mohamed Salah, who’s seemed to thrive in his new creative role.

Currently sitting 4th in the table at this early stage, it’s paramount for Klopp’s men to mount a return to winning ways and what a better way to do so against their bitter rivals who are separated a mile across Stanley Park. 

Three wins in four has taken some of the spotlight off under-fire Everton manager Sean Dyche, who’s aim was to comfortably guide the Toffees away from any relegation worries, however a dissatisfactory start on the whole has seen the fanbase turn sour on the man who kept their heads above water last campaign.

However, the mood around the club has changed drastically over the last couple of weeks, with results and performances coming as the tides are starting to turn in Everton’s favour as an ascent up the table is hopeful for the Goodison Park faithful.

With Everton breaking their drawn-out winless streak against Liverpool at Anfield three seasons ago, they’ll be looking to repeat the trick Carlo Ancelotti pulled off as they look to keep pace from the relegation battle. 

  • Team News

Liverpool 

There are many questions to be asked about player availability for the upcoming derby for Liverpool, and what Jurgen Klopp will have to deal with in terms of selections. 

Stefan Bajcetic seems like he’ll continue to sit out on the sideline, giving Liverpool one central defensive midfield option in the form of Endo, and with the South American players expected to be rested or at least put on the bench for the fixture, Klopp could opt to play with a designated number six to break up the play. 

Cody Gakpo is expected to miss the fixture after sustaining an injury against Tottenham Hotspur while netting the equaliser, and so to is Andy Robertson, with the Scotsman looking like he’s broken his shoulder on international duty.

Returning to the Liverpool side is Diogo Jota, who is available for selection again after a red card against Spurs, Curtis Jones still misses the next two Liverpool fixtures.

Everton

There is no new team news for Everton, with no returning players or fresh injuries for the squad and a similar team to the one who went out on international duty is expected to line up at Anfield. 

  • Likely line-ups

Liverpool 

Allison; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Konate, Tsimikas; Endo, Gravenberch, Szoboszlai; Salah, Jota, Diaz

Everton

Pickford; Patterson, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko; Garner, Harrison, Onana, McNeil; Doucoure, Calvert-Lewin

  • Players To Watch

Dominik Szoboszlai (Liverpool)

Liverpool’s <strong><a  data-cke-saved-href='https://www.vavel.com/en/football/2023/08/19/premier-league/1153780-liverpool-3-1-bournemouth-10-man-reds-brush-aside-cherries.html' href='https://www.vavel.com/en/football/2023/08/19/premier-league/1153780-liverpool-3-1-bournemouth-10-man-reds-brush-aside-cherries.html'>Dominik Szoboszlai</a></strong> - Photo (Matthew Ashton - AMA/GETTY Images)
Liverpool’s Dominik Szoboszlai - Photo (Matthew Ashton - AMA/GETTY Images)

After being acquired for a hefty £60,000,000 in the summer by Liverpool, Hungarian midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai is really avowing his worth in the Reds midfield, becoming a central figure in Jurgen Klopp’s system and already is looking like the signing of the summer. 

His passion and energetic drive is a fresh watch for Liverpool fans after the dross they had to endure last season, and him working alongside the youngsters in the middle of the park allows more freedom across the pitch and his contribution in front of goal has certainly been handy for Jurgen Klopp

His two goals so far has been paramount to the Reds’ success and his performances show he’s only going to get better, and potentially Liverpool’s toughest task arises on Saturday in the form of a derby match so the Hungarian has to be on top form. 

Jarrad Branthwaite (Everton)

Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite - Photo (Tony McArdle - Everton FC/GETTY Images)
Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite - Photo (Tony McArdle - Everton FC/GETTY Images)

Everton’s biggest weakness is in front of goal, with the obvious flaw being the ability to kill teams off, but a fine asset for the Toffees has been their rigid defence.

Tarkwoski has formed a solid partnership with last season PSV defender, Jarrad Branthwaite, who was rewarded with a contract and a starting place in the side after impressing in Holland and this season. 

A physical and domineering centre back, the England youth international has gained deserved plaudits for his fine displays and the front men of Liverpool like to get into battles in the air and on the deck, so Branthwaite will fancy his chances albeit coming up against the leagues second highest scorers.  

  • Match details

Where is the game taking place?

This game will take place at Anfield, the home of Liverpool FC

When is the game?

The game will commence on Saturday, October 21, with a 12:30 BST kick-off. 

How can I watch the game?

You can watch the game live on TNT Sports, with coverage getting under way from 11:30am.