13th Apr 2012 | Football
At the very real risk of sounding like a broken record, Liverpool keep getting chalked up at bemusing odds for almost every match they play. For their massive FA Cup semi-final against Everton on Saturday they are 8/5 (Betfred) favourites while their neighbours, on better form and above them in the table, are out at 11/5 with BetVictor.
Let’s start by making the case for the Reds. They probably have the better players, certainly the more expensive, and they won home and away in the Premier League clashes this season without conceding a goal. Looked at like that, they sound like worthy favorites.
But let’s look at the bigger picture. The Toffees are a point ahead of their rivals in the table despite losing the two head-to-head encounters: imagine the chasm there would be if those results had gone the other way! And that isn’t such a far-fetched notion. The Goodison Park league clash was swayed by a highly controversial red card for Jack Rodwell after just 23 minutes. The Anfield re-match was closely contested with an inspired Steven Gerrard proving the difference.
Regardless, the Blues are playing with an imperious confidence that their opponents can only dream of right now. Moyes’ boys crushed Sunderland 4-0 on Easter Monday even with a few key players rested for the weekend. That made it four wins and a draw in the last five in all competitions. Compare that to Liverpool, who only ended a run of one point from four games at Ewood Park.
That 3-2 victory over Blackburn, courtesy of an injury time winner, may have come at a cost. Dalglish’s team were made to fight all the way with 10 men and have had a day less of recovery time. This is obviously a big game for everyone on Merseyside, but for David Moyes it’s a chance to really define his era at Goodison Park. I think his players will seize the moment.
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