Liverpool FC thrashes Everton in the highly anticipated Merseyside Derby as Daniel Sturridge scores a brace for the home side.

Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge | Everton vs Liverpool - Team News, Tactics, Lineups and Prediction

This game was built up as the most important Merseyside derby in recent years and one that could have a long lasting effect in the race for the top four stop in the league. This is a huge win for Liverpool, not only due to the score line, but also due to the fact that league leaders Arsenal dropped points against Southampton as well. For Everton this was only their third defeat of the season and they now have a gap to make with the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool as they aim for Champions League qualification.

The home side started the match brightly and hogged most of the early possession in the game. Steven Gerrard provided them with the lead in the 21st minute of the match as he headed home a corner from Luis Suarez. Everton created few opportunities of their own after conceding this goal, but failed to score as Mignolet stood tall in the Liverpool goal. Then Liverpool extended their from a counter-attack just as Everton were looking dangerous as Daniel Sturridge raced clear of the defence,  after being set up by a wonderful through ball by Coutinho, and finished it calmly past Tim Howard.

Just two minute later Sturridge completed his brace and put the game beyond doubts as a long aerial ball from Kolo Toure put him through on goal and the England international lobbed the on rushing goalkeeper to score Liverpool’s third. It seemed too easy for the home side at that point and Luis Suarez completed the thrashing as he scored his 23rd league goal of the season from another counter-attack in the second half. Phil Jagielka gave the ball away in Liverpool’s half and Suarez was clean through on goal. The Uruguayan international kept his calm and finished it past Howard to send the Kopites into ecstasy.

Brendan Rodgers was delighted with his performance and expressed his happiness at having secured this massive win in such an important Derby fixture. He also seemed confident that Liverpool will be in contention in the race for the fourth spot in the table.

“I’m delighted for the players and obviously the supporters.

“I know that feelings run high here on Merseyside for the derby games. It was a brilliant team performance. There was good defensive organisation. We were outstanding on the counter attack and we controlled our spaces really well.

“We were clinical in front of goal. We scored four and could have had arguably two or three more. It was a brilliant win for us and I’m delighted for everyone.

“It’s obviously really special because of the nature of the game – it was two teams that have been doing outstandingly well and doing the city proud throughout the course of the season.

“It was a combination of the players and the supporters – they were brilliant again tonight. I’m delighted for them because I know how special the derby games are here and how special they are for the supporters.

“For them to get that win and the victory, and for the players to perform how they did, was really special. We’ve got a real focus and concentration going into every game.

“This was a massive game tonight as everyone who came to the ground knew, so for us to score goals, defend like we did and attack with that efficiency was very pleasing.

“We knew it was going to be a big match. I’m more delighted for the players and supporters. For me, it’s three points; I’ll be more delighted at the end of the season if we can arrive in the top four. I’ll probably over-analyse the performance and see the areas we can improve on going forward.

“I think we’ve shown all season that we’re going to be in contention for fourth place and we know that there’s going to be one or two other teams fighting for it.

“We’ve shown a wonderful team spirit here [at Anfield]. We’ve had various players missing at various times. But we’ve been able to structure the team so that we’re not relying on any one player.

“It’s really about the ethos of the team and that was seen tonight. Our attacking players were filling in the spaces and putting the work in.” – The Liverpool manager said.