YNWA revisits the memorable home League meetings of the last 25 years with Everton as we prepare for the ninetieth League derby at Anfield on Monday evening. So far our record reads 38 wins, 28 draws and 23 defeats, and no other team has as many Anfield League wins.
Fernando Torres scored the only goal of the game early on last March, our hundredth of that campaign and the sixth home League fixture in which he had netted, equalling a club record. Pepe Reina kept his 54th clean sheet in his hundredth League game, a new club record. The club also reached a milestone by securing our 3,000th League point.
Steven Gerrard was sent off in March 2006 for two quick-fire yellow cards before Phil Neville put us ahead at the end of the first half with a superb headed own goal from a corner. Luis García increased the lead with a beautiful lob soon after the restart, our 500th home Premiership goal. Tim Cahill headed the visitors back into the game with their hundredth League goal in an Anfield derby before substitute Andy van der Meyde was sent off for elbowing Xabi Alonso just five minutes after coming on. Harry Kewell rounded off a 3-1 victory with a fine strike. The two clubs had received special permission for Gerrard and James Beattie to wear ‘08' shirts to promote Liverpool's status as the European Capital of Culture in 2008.
A year earlier, Gerrard opened the scoring from a free-kick after Luis García was felled. The diminutive Spaniard put us two ahead with an opportunist header at the break. Milan Baroš was then dismissed for a reckless lunge on Alan Stubbs before Tim Cahill pulled a goal back. However, we held on to win 2-1 and secure our 150th home Premiership win.
Craig Bellamy had a goal disallowed as the game ended without score in February 2007. Rafael Benítez angered Blues fans by referring to them as a "small club" in the aftermath of this game. Emile Heskey played his 150th reds game in a goalless draw in December 2002, our fiftieth draw under Gérard Houllier's sole charge. Sami Hyypiä was skipper for the 88th time, then a Premiership club record. Ten months previously, Nicolas Anelka netted after Thomas Radzinski had opened the scoring as we drew 1-1, while Sami Hyypiä played in his hundredth League match for us. This was the first League derby in a quarter of century to feature two English goalies, as Chris Kirkland and Steve Simonsen played. Kirkland thus became the first reds keeper to play his first three games for the club in three different competitions, following appearances in the League Cup and Champions League. Abel Xavier appeared for the reds, becoming the first player ever to play for both sides in the same season.
In October 2000, Nick Barmby scored against his old club at the Anny Road end before Kevin Campbell equalised. We steamrollered our way to a 3-1 win in the second half, thanks to an Emile Heskey strike and a Patrik Berger penalty, after Vladimír Šmicer was felled, for which Thomas Gravesen was sent off.
We lost 1-0 in September 1999 as Steven Gerrard, Sander Westerveld and Francis Jeffers were all dismissed, our most recent reverse in this fixture. Steve Staunton kept goal for the final minutes, saving well from an Abel Xavier shot to keep the score down. Staunton therefore became one of just four men who did not concede in their entire reds careers between the sticks, although none of them played more than once!
Robbie's memorable Anfield derbies
Our meeting in April 1999 is recalled for Robbie Fowler's goal-line sniffing in front of the away fans after he notched a penalty, one of two goals he scored in a 3-2 win that ended five years without a derby win, with Patrik Berger netting a scorcher. Steven Gerrard helped preserve the win with a late goal-line clearance. Francis Jeffers scored aged eighteen years 68 days, the youngest post-war derby scorer. David James played his 213th consecutive reds game in a 1-1 draw in February 1998, before finally making way for Brad Friedel. Paul Ince nabbed our goal, while Robbie Fowler suffered a serious knee injury in a clash with keeper Thomas Myhre.
In front of the Kop
The 150th League derby in March 1994 was the last in front of the standing Kop, and the first for both managers, Roy Evans and Mike Walker. Ex-reds reserve Dave Watson opened the scoring, but skipper Ian Rush replied just ten seconds from the restart in front of an ecstatic Kop. Robbie Fowler netted the winner before half time in what was Uncle Roy's only derby win as boss. Ronnie Rosenthal secured victory with the only goal of the game in the final minute a year earlier, so becoming the final sub to score in front of the standing Kop.
Steve McMahon put us ahead in April 1987 before Kevin Sheedy equalised with a free-kick past Mike Hooper, before flicking the V's to the Kop. Ian Rush added a brace to equal Dixie Dean's derby scoring record of nineteen, as we won 3-1. However, the Blues still went on to reclaim the League title.
David Speedie scored twice on his Anfield debut in a 3-1 win in February 1991, with Jan Mølby also on target, in the first of our three consecutive derby games in twelve days. Five years earlier, the Blues inflicted our only home League defeat of the season on us, 2-0, but we then went on a great run to win our sixteenth championship. Bruce Grobbelaar was only passed fit at the eleventh hour, while Jan Mølby was played ‘in the hole' due to our injuries in attack.
Bugsy off the mark
David Burrows bagged the first of his three reds strikes as we won 3-1 in August 1991. Dean Saunders and Ray Houghton also netted in a 3-1 victory.