Koe­man calls for calm heads ahead of Liver­pool game

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

LIVER­POOL:

Ever­ton man­ager Ron­ald Koe­man has asked his play­ers to keep their emo­tions un­der con­trol ahead of Mon­day’s Premier League derby against Liver­pool. Ever­ton have not won in the last 11 topflight matches against their Mersey­side neigh­bours, los­ing 4-0 in April in a match in which de­fender Ramiro Funes Mori was sent off for a reck­less tackle on Liver­pool for­ward Divock Origi. “The derby is all about the fans, we un­der­stand that but we need to be calm and pre­pare for the game in the way we like,” Koe­man told a news con­fer­ence yesterday ahead of his first Mersey­side derby.

“It’s about pre­par­ing the team. You have an emo­tional part that you need to con­trol. That’s the most im­por­tant.” Ever­ton have only one win in their past 19 league games against Liver­pool go­ing back to 2007.

“It’s not good. One out of 19,” Koe­man said. “We need to ac­cept how dif­fi­cult it is, win the game and make the fans happy.”

Ever­ton, who beat Ar­se­nal 2-1 in mid­week, are eighth in the league while Liver­pool are sec­ond, but Koe­man has taken heart from the neigh­bour­ing team’s re­cent strug­gles. Liver­pool beat Mid­dles­brough 30 on Wed­nes­day, but were held 2-2 by West Ham United at An­field and lost 4-3 at Bournemouth this month.

“They are strong, do­ing well, but lost their way against Bournemouth and drew with West Ham. If Bournemouth can beat Liver­pool, we have a pos­si­bil­ity,” Koe­man said. Vic­tory over Ar­se­nal snapped a run of five games with­out a win for Ever­ton.

“The pos­i­tive side is that we keep our be­lief un­til the end of the (Ar­se­nal) game,” he added. “That is part of the char­ac­ter of the play­ers. “We had a good sup­port from the fans and it makes it dif­fi­cult for teams to play at Good­i­son Park.” Ever­ton trio Gareth Barry, Leighton Baines and Ryan Ma­son signed new con­tracts on Fri­day, but Koe­man con­firmed Yan­nick Bo­lasie’s sea­son was over af­ter the for­ward un­der­went knee surgery yesterday.

“Bo­lasie had surgery on his menis­cus but now needs an­other on his an­te­rior cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment,” the man­ager added. “He will be out for a long time.”— Reuters

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