According to Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, the Reds failed to ‘control’ the game when the Merseyside derby got emotional.
Liverpool and Everton played out a dull 0-0 draw at Goodison Park earlier in the day. The Merseyside derby failed to live up to the billing and ended in a goalless draw.
Liverpool were without the injured Mohamed Salah, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Roberto Firmino came off the bench as Klopp fielded a weakened side, keeping an eye on the quarter-final second leg tie against Manchester City in the Champions League.
In the first half, both goalkeepers made fine saves. Everton’s Jordan Pickford denied Dominic Solanke and James Milner, while Loris Karius kept out a rasping Yannick Bolasie curler.
The Reds faded in the second-half as Cenk Tosun and Dominic Calvert-Lewin missed two gilt-edged opportunities at the death to end Everton’s seven-and-a-half-year wait for Merseyside derby win.
However, Klopp admitted that he was happy with the result ahead of Tuesday’s huge Champions League quarter-final second leg against Manchester City.
“We controlled the game for around 60 minutes, then everything got a bit emotional,” Klopp told after the game, as quoted by the Daily Star.
“In those times we have to control the game, but we didn’t.
“At the end there were two crosses that were close, so I am completely fine with the result. Clean sheet, good defending, but last 20 minutes, we need to play and we didn’t do that.”
When asked about Liverpool’s drab second-half display, our gaffer added:
“That’s completely normal, until then it was not the game the people wanted, but that was not our job to do that, not our 1A solution but our 1b and we take that.”
It was not an eye-catching, full of thrills and spills Merseyside derby but we can be content with a point. Klopp decided to play a weakened side and got a good result.
It would have been a different story had the Toffees scored at the death but overall, it was a convincing display from our defence that kept the hosts at bay.
A point at Goodison Park is always deemed as positive and let’s hope we do well against City at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday.