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Last Updated: Saturday, 25 March 2006, 14:39 GMT
Liverpool 3-1 Everton
Luis Garcia scored Liverpool's second goal
Luis Garcia scored Liverpool's second goal
Liverpool overcame the early dismissal of Steven Gerrard to beat Everton in an incident-packed Merseyside derby.

Gerrard earned two quickfire yellow cards - for kicking the ball away and then a bad challenge on Kevin Kilbane.

Liverpool then scored twice in three minutes through a Phil Neville own goal and a clinical finish from Luis Garcia.

Tim Cahill headed one back but Everton had substitute Andy van der Meyde sent off after 72 minutes for an elbow and Harry Kewell's fine strike sealed it.

The two sides were given special permission from the Premier League for Gerrard and Everton's James Beattie to wear 08 on their shirts to promote the city's year as Capital of Culture.

It is unlikely that part of the marketing campaign was for Gerrard to be given his marching orders after just 18 minutes.

His first booking was for blatantly booting the ball away after Xabi Alonso had fouled Kilbane.

Kilbane was involved less than 40 seconds later when he was brought to the ground by a lunging, two-footed challenge just outside the box from Gerrard.

It was a tackle that could have earned the England star a straight red card but referee Phil Dowd opted for a second yellow.

Gerrard became the latest player to be sent off in a fixture which has seen more red cards than any other Premiership clash.

Everton had already established a grip on the game, looking the more hungry from the kick off and creating two early chances for Cahill.

Liverpool were far from the fluent side that thumped Birmingham 7-0 in midweek and while they enjoyed some good possession there were few goal threats.

Steven Gerrard was sent off after 18 minutes
Gerrard was sent off after 18 minutes
But Gerrard's dismissal seemed to interrupt Everton's dominance and Luis Garcia almost caught out Richard Wright with a sharp turn and dipping shot.

Liverpool were given a helping hand just before the break by Neville, who was sent off in the first Merseyside derby meeting this season along with Mikel Arteta - missing from this game after he jarred a nerve in his back on the morning of the game.

Neville found the net for the first time in an Everton shirt - unfortunately for the Toffees it came at the wrong end as he attempted to head away a John Arne Riise corner but miscued it past Wright.

Everton's hopes of a first win at Anfield this century were made twice as hard when Garcia raced onto a Peter Crouch header and lobbed over Wright, who was stuck in no man's land, and into an empty net.

With an hour gone in the game, Everton boss David Moyes appeared to have lost patience with his side's inability to break down the 10-man Reds and prepared to make three subs.

But the trio were forced to put their tracksuits back on and retake their place on the bench when Cahill arrived late to meet a Leon Osman corner and head home.

Moyes eventually brought on striker Duncan Ferguson, back after a seven-match ban for punching an opponent, and Van der Meyde.

But Everton rarely looked like getting an equaliser and Van der Meyde's dismissal for a stray elbow in an aerial challenge was their last real contribution to the game.

Liverpool were not finished though and Garcia and Kewell went close before the latter brilliantly shot past Wright from outside the box to cap a fine win that takes them above Manchester United into second place.


  • Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez:
    "We must learn, Steven and all the players, that you can play with the brain as well as the heart.

    "It is important in every game. Steven is truly disappointed but happy for the team.

    "He knows it created a difficult situation for the team and we must learn for the future."

  • Everton boss David Moyes:
    "That was a missed opportunity. Against 10 men we should have taken control.

    "We were doing fine until we conceded an own goal just before half-time and another two minutes after the break.

    "All we had said at the break was of no use, we were suddenly 2-0 down having been looking forward to playing against 10 men for the final 45 minutes."


    Liverpool: Reina, Finnan, Carragher, Hyypia, Riise, Luis Garcia, Gerrard, Sissoko, Alonso, Kewell (Warnock 87), Crouch (Morientes 90).
    Subs Not Used: Dudek, Kromkamp, Fowler.

    Sent Off: Gerrard (18).

    Booked: Gerrard, Alonso, Kewell.

    Goals: Neville 45 og, Luis Garcia 47, Kewell 84.

    Everton: Wright, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Naysmith, Osman, Cahill, Neville, Kilbane (Van der Meyde 68), Beattie, McFadden (Ferguson 67).
    Subs Not Used: Turner, Yobo, Davies.

    Sent Off: Van der Meyde (73).

    Booked: Cahill, Stubbs, Kilbane, Weir, Ferguson, Neville, Hibbert.

    Goals: Cahill 61.

    Att: 44,923.

    Ref: P Dowd (Staffordshire).




  • WATCH AND LISTEN
    Interview: Everton boss David Moyes


    Interview: Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez



    SEE ALSO
    Saturday's football photos
    25 Mar 06 |  Photo Galleries


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