Paul Merson has told Sky Sports that he thought that Jordan Pickford was outstanding in Everton’s Merseyside derby victory, and insisted that Liverpool would have taken something from the game had it not been for how good he was.
Pickford was dealt a tough hand as he returned to the starting lineup for Wednesday’s clash with Manchester City.
And while that evening did not go well for the Toffees, Carlo Ancelotti’s men were able to win the big one as they secured their first victory at Anfield since 1999 on Saturday.
Goals from Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson were decisive. But Everton also produced a colossal defensive display to keep the champions at bay.
And Pickford managed to silence a lot of critics with his performance. He made a couple of world-class saves, including one outrageous stop from Jordan Henderson in the first-half.
And Merson suggested that Everton’s run without a win at Anfield may have continued had it not been for the goalkeeper.
“You also have to give credit where credit is due, I thought Jordan Pickford was outstanding,” he told Sky Sports.
“He was solid and made some really good saves. He was England’s number one and that’s what I expect from him every week. If he doesn’t have the game he has then I think Liverpool probably get a result.”
Pickford still needs to prove a point. There has always been little doubt that the 26-year-old is capable of sensational performances. But he has struggled to keep the mistakes out of his game.
Ancelotti will be hoping that the faith put in Olsen has acted as a wake-up call for Pickford. If he can be more consistent and more reliable, he could be one of the first names on the team sheet for years to come.