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Curtis Jones writes Merseyside derby history in 1-0 win against Everton in the FA Cup

Liverpool verdict - New contract needed after heroes emerge in historic derby win against Everton
Paul Gorst gives his match verdict after Curtis Jones writes Merseyside derby history in 1-0 win against Everton in the FA Cup

By Paul Gorst Liverpool FC correspondent
09:40, 6 JAN 2020

With one swing of his gifted right foot, Curtis Jones brought about an Anfield eruption that had not been heard for some time.
The Liverpool Academy graduate's glorious, 71st-minute strike was enough to see him add his name to the Reds' rich history of Merseyside derby day heroes.

Make no mistake, this goal - this result - will be talked about for years to come as a Reds side packed with Academy hopefuls, saw off the Everton threat to book their place in the fourth round of the FA Cup.
It was the finest afternoon in the careers of Nat Phillips, Yasser Larouci, Harvey Elliott, Neco Williams and Pedro Chirivella, who all - to a man - stepped up to the huge task thrown down to them by Jurgen Klopp, pre-match.
Of course, Jones will consider it the zenith of his too, to date, as he scored one of Liverpool's goals of the season to see off the Blues in what was a moment from the heavens for the local midfielder.
A wondergoal that decides an FA Cup tie against Everton at Anfield? The only thing missing from his Saturday night dream will have been it coming at the Kop end.

One off the bucket list for him. A special strike that will go down in folklore.

With the Club World Cup safely in the Anfield trophy cabinet for the first time and Carabao Cup hopes over for another season, the FA Cup, both plainly and unashamedly, represents the lowest of Liverpool's remaining priorities for a campaign that is promising so much.

Try telling that this lot though as they chased, tackled and battled their way through an attritional contest before it was settled by stardust.
A third-round meeting with an energised Everton, will have thrown a big spanner in the works for the Reds.

Many Kopites, rightly proud of the well-established unbeaten record in this fixture, were desperate not to see it fall by the wayside in meek fashion.

Liverpool fans all say same thing after James Milner injury blow against Everton
Modern football moves at breakneck speed but it's still hard to fathom just how much has changed at Goodison Park since they were hammered 5-2 at Anfield just 32 days ago to put Marco Silva's troubled reign out of its misery.
Since then, the Blues have recruited one of the most well-respected coaches working in football today in Carlo Ancelotti to bring a box office feel to Merseyside derby dugouts.
The only manager to have got the better of Klopp so far this season, the Italian's legendary status has provided an almost immeasurable lifting of spirits on the opposite side of Stanley Park.

Add that to the ongoing uncertainty over the actual 11 Klopp would send out onto the pitch in the 235th meeting between these two sides before the game, and there had rarely been more optimism for the travelling support that they could end a 21-year wait for victory at the home of their most fierce rivals.

Some things though, never change, it seems.

An energy-sapping 11 games in 33 days - that included a jaunt to Qatar for the successful Club World Cup - saw Klopp's options stretched to breaking point before kick-off.
With as many as five first-team stars sidelined through injury, inexperience was the strong theme for Liverpool's lineup.
The mere fact that it was Everton visiting cut little ice with the Liverpool boss, too.
He, unlike so many others connected, indicated that wouldn't be a factor in his pre-match thinking.
"In the moment when I start getting emotional – and it is not during the game – then all of us at Liverpool have a problem," he said.
True to his word, Klopp made nine changes that included a debut for young defender Phillips, who was recalled from Stuttgart towards the end of December.

Chirivella, Elliott, Williams and Jones all featured from the start as new-boy Takumi Minamino made his Liverpool debut following a £7.25million move from Red Bull Salzburg.
A big risk, no question, but the Liverpool manager's gaze has been firmly fixed on grander accomplishments for some time now.
Fans needn't have worried though, Liverpool's backup gamely stepped up to the task, ensuring a derby record that is a source of immense city pride simply continues into the new decade.
Both teams started the game brightly but Liverpool's injury crisis deepened when James Milner was forced off inside the opening 10 minutes.

The young side could easily have wilted having lost their leader so early on, but they refused to let it cast a long shadow.
On came Larouci in his place as the captain's duty went to Adam Lallana.
The former Southampton skipper took responsibility and turned in an excellent performance befitting of the armband. On this evidence, sign him up for another year.

The 31-year-old was an inspiration in midfield combining an indefatigable work ethic with some silk and style in the engine room.
James Milner’s new deal is proof that age is no barrier to furthering an Anfield career and Lallana must go into the same category.
Liverpool looked the most assured in the opening half hour but they had Adrian to thank for three excellent saves to keep Everton at bay.
The best of which came with his feet from Richarlison's low strike inside the penalty area. Liverpool's biggest chance of the first half fell to Minamino as he glanced Origi's inviting cross just wide.
The Toffees then had Jordan Pickford to thank for keeping it goalless with a superb save from regular Everton scourge Origi.
The England international got down low to his right to tip the goal-bound effort out for a corner.

After the break, Elliott's enterprising performance continued to cause issues for Lucas Digne and the France international was booked for a cynical haul back on the teenager as he escaped his clutches down Liverpool's right side.
Ancelotti sent on Moise Kean and Fabian Delph for Seamus Coleman and Gylfi Sigurdsson with the ineffective Icelander unable to make a real contribution.
Klopp then reached for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for the tireless Minamino.
 The Japanese forward's work ethic and ability to press was evident throughout.He will be a vital asset in the weeks, months and years to come.

The game's decisive moment then came as Jones wound one up into Pickford's stanchion from 25 yards.
The £30m England No.1 was beaten all ends up as the teenager marked the biggest moment of his fledgling career to date in stunning, jaw-dropping, history-writing fashion.

In truth, Liverpool's youngsters deserved it; they more than matched their visitors' work ethic and added a dash of supreme quality when it was really needed in the shape of the winning goal.
The final whistle was greeted with a huge cheer at the realisation that a second string team had got the better of Ancelotti's full-strength Blues.

Shankly words ring true after LFC win

There is something about this famous old ground that brings out an inferiority complex in Everton.
It's now 23 games without loss against the local enemy on home soil.
It might be a long time before the visitors are afforded a chance as presentable as this one to bring it all crashing down, too.

Liverpool, the reigning European and world champions, are arguably the best footballing side on the planet in 2020.
Their reserves, it seems, can perform a passable impression, too. Least of all the match-winner.
Bill Shankly once quipped that Liverpool had the best two teams on Merseyside. There might perhaps be some truth in that in 2020.

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