Derby Daze ...

Posted by Mark_P on March 23, 2006, 11:58:54 AM

It’s the fixture everyone looks for first and that splits the city 70-30 in Liverpool’s favour, whilst making heroes of those who can make amends for a mediocre season with a good ninety minutes (Antonio Nunez anyone). There are staff from both clubs, trying to divert any pressure, who’ll come out with the immortal line that “it’s just another three points.”  There’ll be those arguing that Everton should be less of a concern to us than Chelsea, Arsenal or Manchester United.  But, as we all know, Saturday will see the biggest fixture of the season.

With sales of their brand new DVD of their recent success (wins against Charlton, Blackburn & Arsenal) boosting the club, Everton have actually won a few games of late. James Beattie has even scored away from Goodison and is now looking for a place in the England set-up ahead of Peter Crouch. Mikael Arteta has been in good form and is looking for a place in the Spanish set up ahead of Luis Garcia. Europe is back on the cards, David Moyes’ name is sung from the Gladwys Street and all is good again at Goodison – until a few defeats and we’ll hear the Radio City phone in jammed with irate Welshman telling us how “Moyes has gorra go laaaaa”.

The Champions of Europe go into the game on the back of three good wins, and a place in the FA Cup Semi Final to look forward to, just coming into form after a worrying run that saw us dumped out of Europe for the first time in two years. Key players seem to be coming into form, but as we all know the form book gets thrown out the window.

But the days where Barry Horne, Joe Parkinson and Duncan Ferguson could roll up at Anfield, show a bit of fight and come away with the spoils are seemingly over. Dark days like the Kanchelskis brace, Cadermateri running rings round Kvarme and Campbell scoring the winner at Anfield in September ’99, have been few and far between in Derbies in the last six years or so. In fact there’s only been a couple of defensive Everton teams snatching draws somehow and the Goodison Derby last season that have been blips, where Lee Carsley scored the winner when Everton beat Liverpool Reserves at Goodison.

In all seriousness though, Derbies are what football is all about. Looking forward to it for weeks, yet when the day gets closer the nerves start.  A win is like a cup win; you can go to town and rub it in; go to work with your head held high. A loss and you just feel like emigrating to Southport for six months until there’s another chance to put one over on them. Derbies are sometimes won by a flash of brilliance by an individual, but the side on the day with the most desire is usually the one that comes away with the bragging rights.

Here’s a few of our best moments against our rabid neighbours, all from recent history.

Liverpool 3 Everton 2, 1999

Whilst God eating the grass hit the headlines, it was the Reds' first Derby win since 1994. A relegation threatened Everton (“You’ll have to swim to your Derby”) turned up at Anfield with the ‘dogs of war’ mentality still at large.  Unpleasant on the eye and content with trying to outmuscle the Reds, it was actually the Welshmen who took the lead, with Olivier Dacourt’s heavily deflected goal ensuring some Evertonian at the front of the Kop got a Scouse pie to his head. 

It was around a quarter of an hour later when Paul Ince was brought down by Materazzi in the Anny Road goal.  Robbie Fowler slotted the penalty, then promptly slipped over in front of the Everton fans and started chewing the grass.  Robbie then went on to slam the tired old ‘Smackhead’ taunts back down Everton throats when he scored his and the Reds' second, a header from a flick on from 73 year old Stan Staunton.

Patrik Berger then made it three smashing the ball home from a Redknapp corner, and the Reds were cruising. The Jug Eared Cheating Twat scored possibly the jammiest goal in Merseyside Derby history, and an awkward rookie with a bowl head haircut saved the Reds with two goal line clearances from Cadermateri. Steven something or other.

Everton went on to stay in the Premiership, helped on by a 6-0 demolition of West Ham Ressies. And they didn’t even need a dodgy keeper to stay up this year either.

Libpool 3 Everton 1, 2000

The game was all about the legend that was Nick Barmby. He scored a few goals and chipped in with some good displays during his time at Anfield, but this magnificent diving header, after superb work by Fowler, was worth the £5m odd we paid the shite (hope it was all old notes).

Christian Ziege, who was hardly the best player, twatted the ball at another shite, later to be Liverpool, defender Abel Xavier, and the ball looped into the area. Robbie then gave Weir the slightest of nudges and the dirty diving twat fell, to leave the hero of the hour to head past Gerrard to show the Rhyl contingent in the Anny Road that he wasn’t in the slightest bit arsed that they “knew were he lived.”

After that Campbell scored a spawny goal in the Kop end and Berger scored a penno, before Emile Heskey showed the Wrexham contingent in the Anny Road that he wasn’t arsed that they wanted to “know if he’d be their slave”.

But it was our Nicky who stole the show and we went on to win more trophies that season than Everton have in about 120 years.

Everton 2 Liverpool 3, 2001

Good Friday and a bad tempered Derby at Goodison that saw the Reds outwit the 12 men Everton, who surprisingly named Jeff Winter as a central midfielder. The minutes silence in respect of the Hillsborough victim was interrupted by such witty comments as “What about Heysel?”, “Murderers” and “Fucking Red Shite!” 

The game was a real end to end game, with Winter for some reason sending off left winger Igor Biscan for having the cheek to slide in anywhere near the fat twat at left back. Winter then gave Everton a penalty for Hyypia having the cheek to touch the Tampon. 

Everton looked like they’d got an underserved draw and as the Cardiff contingent in the Upper Bullen were spitting venom as they prepared to celebrate like it was 1985, Liverpool won a free kick as the Swedish cheating bastard fouled Gregory Vignal.  Gary Mac picked up the ball, moved it a few yards (CHEATING REDSHITE BASTARD!) and made hand signals for our players to move in.  Paul Gerrard was fooled and Gary Mac then proceeded to make everything the world right again, and silence the bitter ramblings of the pissed up Blues, with a magnificent 70 yard free kick. 

Liverpool went on to win everything – Everton finished in their all time highest position of 16th.

Everton 0 Liverpool 3, 2003

The 3-1 the year before was a good one, but this one was men against boys.  Michael Owen got his first two Derby goals from open play, and Harry Kewell opened his account for us, with Steve Simonsen Man of the Match for the Reds.

Owen slotted with ease the first, before Baros left Yobo on his arse to play in Owen. The Evertonians had no regard for their fellow Welshmen and, surprising, began to leave in their droves. Kewell scored with ease after Simonsen had left the goal open for us, and the gulf in class was apparent to even the most bitter.

Although the best part of the match was the Shrek look-a-like Granny Shagger getting marked out the game from start to finish by the centre half legend that is … Igor Biscan. Ahem.

Soon to be Champions of Europe 2 Everton 1, 2005

After the great performances in the European Cup (as we won it for the FIFTH time) this performance is often overlooked.  Liverpool came into this on the back of a dire draw at home against Blackburn Rovers. 

The team was changed totally by half time, as Everton adopted a tactic of ‘if you can’t play against them, just twat them.’  Warnock, Hamann and Morientes were all taken/carried off injured, whilst Luis Garcia was forced to played on half in agony but with one good leg still ran/limped Weir ragged.

Hibbert was unlucky not to break Garcia’s leg outside the Kop penno box, as the square headed full back tried to stamp down on Garcia’s shin he just missed.  It was left to skipper, who later lifted the European Cup, to slam home the opener. It was what the Reds, later to become European Champions, deserved.

Fernando Morientes, inelligible from winning the European Cup this season, had a superb dipping shot which was spooned by Martyn onto the bar, with Garcia, who later went on to become a European Cup winner, heading home, showing the Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch contingent in the Anny Road that he wasn’t arsed they were trying to break his legs at any chance.

Milan Baros, who some suggested might in the future be a striker worthy of winning the European Cup, challenged for a fifty fifty with Alan Stubbs and got harshly sent off, but he had already showed he was about as much use as Pistone with some poor misses that could've wrapped the game up.  Nunez was boss on the right as he danced round Pistone with ease, whilst Smicer was also great as he battled hard. Cahill got a mis-hit consolation but it was to be Benitez’s first Derby win.

Liverpool went onto be European Champions – Everton qualified for a beating from Villareal and Bucharest.

Reds 3 Mongrels 1

As we all know, from 2004-2006 Liverpool's FA Cup and European cup exploits were because of our skipper.  In fact listen to any pissed up Blue in a pub taking swigs from cheap cider, and he'll tell you how "Yer a fuckin one man teem laa".

And so when dead tough David Weir and Alan Stubbs, both hard and nothing like those foreign fancy Dan twats who run round trying to get people booked, ran the length of the pitch berating Phil Dowd, it was clear that our one man team was going to be quickly turned into an, erm, no man team.

The Hafan-Y-Mor contingent in the visiting section celebrated like UEFA had just declared they were now four times European Cup winners in light of their 'muurdering Redshite' neightbours.  They hugged, kissed and even waved Bulgarian flags for a few minutes - although I've just looked at their squad for that day and can't seem to find a Bulgarian who played?

The Pitch Invaders soon had another sob story to tell down County Road when the player they all wanted in the England squad decided to flick the ball past Richard Wright in goal.  As the players went in at half time, the soon to be FA Cup winners had struck the first blow, even without our 'one man'.

As Pepe Reina launched a ball upfield in the first minute of the second half there seemed little on for the Reds, but Peter Crouch's flick on, helped of course by the always dependable Richard Wright's attempt to get the ball, gave Luis Garcia a chance and he lifted the ball over the Ton-Ton-Ton keeper and put us two up.

For the second Anfield Derby running Tim Cahill got a dodgy goal, this time Alan 'Couldn't get a game at Sunderland' Stubbs blatently handled the ball before Cahill headed just about in.  Blue's were so excited they even start singing "Ton, Ton, Tonnnn..."

But Harry Kewell ensured we at least had some breathing space with a superb goal.  "Reformed" piss head/coke head/Gary head Ferrari-less midfielder Andy van der Meyde was then sent off for a bad elbow on Xabi Alonso, but with him even making Kewell look slim-line, it's highly unlikely he was going to do much.

There was just time to rub it in, then off to town for (another) Derby day celebration.

Here’s to this Saturday becoming another good one. If everyone's up for it, on and off the pitch, the bragging rights for six months will hopefully be secured and holidays to Wales before next year will be a time of great banter ...

© Mark_P 2006

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