EPL

'I think I had a good game' – Pickford plays a blinder to defy Liverpool

By Sports Desk September 03, 2022

Jordan Pickford enjoyed putting on a goalkeeping masterclass as Liverpool and Everton finished goalless in a gripping Merseyside derby.

The Premier League tussle at Goodison Park saw Pickford make eight saves, most of them stunning efforts, to keep Liverpool blank on the scoresheet.

His final stop came deep into stoppage time as Mohamed Salah set his aim on the bottom-right corner, with the faintest of touches from Pickford perhaps proving the difference between the ball sneaking in and striking the post, as it did.

As the ball bounced away, Pickford knew his efforts had been instrumental in ensuring local bragging rights were shared.

Asked whether he got a fingertip to that strike, Pickford told BT Sport: "Of course I did! It was one of them. I think I had a good game today, helping the lads.

"You need loads of leaders on the pitch and I think you can see that with the spirit we've got that. We didn't get three points but we got a draw and we keep building now."

His eight saves ranks as the most Pickford has made in a Premier League game while keeping a clean sheet, whether for Everton or his previous club, Sunderland.

The England goalkeeper was almost matched by Liverpool shot-stopper Alisson, who pulled off four saves, including a crucial stop to deny Everton new boy Neal Maupay.

Liverpool hit the woodwork three times in all, with Pickford turning a shot from Darwin Nunez against the bar and Luis Diaz sending a thumping drive against the right post.

Asked about the goalkeeping show, Pickford said: "It was good, yeah. Alisson made some wonderful saves as well – that's our job, help the team when they need it and it's my first clean sheet of the season, another building block for us as a team to get better."

Everton thought they had found a goal midway through the second half when Conor Coady tapped in after Maupay sent the ball across the six-yard box, but the defender had strayed narrowly offside.

"Very unfortunate [to have a] goal disallowed, you can see it was very tight," Pickford said. "I think we're just building, we've got that character now as a team and that team spirit, it's pushing us on. We haven't got a win on the board yet, but we've been hard to beat."

Everton have drawn four consecutive Premier League games for the first time since a run from October into November in 2012, which contained a 2-2 draw against Liverpool.

Liverpool, meanwhile, remain unbeaten in their last 12 Premier League away games against Everton (W3 D9) since a 2-0 loss in October 2010. 

The derby honours are often shared, and Pickford said of Everton's progress under Frank Lampard: "Four points, four draws, hard work, commitment, we'll keep building, get stronger and get the wins."

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