Martin Keown has claimed that Everton manager Carlo Anceltotti will be considering a tactical decision with his defender Lucas Digne ahead of the Merseyside showdown on Saturday afternoon.
The Toffees host Liverpool in the Premier League and their opponents will be desperate to respond to their previous 7-2 hammering against Aston Villa.
Pundit Keown does believe though Ancelotti will be mulling over his tactics ahead of Liverpool and feels he may take some inspiration from Villa’s recent masterclass.
He’s suggested that he may be looking to change the role of Digne from an aggressive front-foot approach to a conservative one.
27-year-old left-back Digne is such an important player going forward for Everton with his overlapping runs and his delivery is usually on the money, but he’s going to be tested thoroughly going the other way due to the threat of Liverpool right-winger Mohamed Salah.
“Ancelotti’s full backs like supporting the attack. Lucas Digne on the left flies forward in particular — he has provided the second-most crosses of any Premier League player this season,” Keown told the Daily Mail.
“But I do wonder how Ancelotti will tell Digne to play on Saturday. Villa left back Matt Targett, for example, rarely vacated his post against Liverpool. Dean Smith didn’t want to give Klopp’s forwards the space to play, and there was safety in numbers at the back for Villa. But Digne’s creativity is a vital part of Everton’s system. That is something Ancelotti will have been thinking about.”
Saturday’s Merseyside showdown feels like it’s got more riding on it than in recent years and Everton’s 100 per cent winning start to the season has put pressure on them going into the fixture at Goodison Park, which is a contrast considering it’s their opponents with the stronger form.
Ancelotti’s side sit top of the league table with four wins from four, while opponents Liverpool need a response after their hammering to Villa before the international break.
Reigning Premier League champions Liverpool still have to be considered the favourites this weekend, but Everton have all the momentum going into the game and there players should be chomping at the bit to get out on the pitch.