Derby day and time for Reds to “step it up”

The dust has barely settled on Saturday’s game then along comes another. Tonight we face Everton in the 217th Merseyside derby.

In fact this week could define our season. It’s sort of crept up on us but lose to Everton tonight and we could have well and truly botched, remote as they are, chances of fourth spot especially as Arsenal stretched the gap to thirteen points last night. Then on Saturday there is Stoke in the FA Cup sixth round, it’s one of those crunch weeks!

With three straight defeats in the league this is not really the sort of game we needed however, a win would provide the team with the psychological boost, not mention impetus, it needs after Saturday. Many thought that we would ”kick on” after the Carling Cup Final however so far this hasn’t been the case. I wouldn’t necessarily say we were drinking at the last chance saloon but, with a dozen or so games to go, we need to win this game, and the Stoke game, to prevent the barman calling “time” on the 2012-13 season.

I know twelve games is a lot however can we rely on all the teams above us slipping up to enable us to make progress? Moreover given our current form can we in all certainty be confident about victories in a good few of them? Steven Gerrard has already issued a rallying call.

“The players need to take responsibility for where we are in the league, It’s just not good enough for a club like us to be there. We have to find a better level of consistency. We need a reaction and there’s no better team to produce that against than Everton. These are the games you always look forward to. It’s a night match and there’s going to be a fantastic atmosphere at Anfield. It’s important the players put in a performance and get a result for the fans. Everyone is a bit down after recent results but we want to put a smile back on their faces. It’s a big week and we want to go into that Cup tie with Stoke on the back of a win.”

Surely it’s about time we turned our home dominance into points? We need to be consistent in front of goal and take more chances, no doubt Luis Suarez, who we are relying on to do just that, will be assured a “warm “ welcome from the visiting fans and one wonders just how it will take before this begins to grind him down. Already the Paris Saint-Germain rumour has been resurrected once more. This time it appears to be different as we’ve a quote from our man

“Yes, I could come to Paris, but like any other big club. There are lots of big clubs with that kind of status, who want to build a great team, and Paris are one of those clubs that are recruiting to make themselves stronger.”

I don’t think that necessarily means Suarez wants to leave us however. I’ve no doubt in the past Jimmy Page probably said he’d like to play guitar with Pete Townsend however it doesn’t mean he’s going to leave Led Zeppelin to join The Who – sorry showing my age there!

The point is that given what’s gone on Suarez is always going to the be the focus of such rumours and this is nothing new. We’ve had with all our top players Mascherano, Torres, Alonso remember Gerrard and Chelsea a few years back, it goes with the territory!

Prediction? There will a sending off there’s usually one or two in this game! However as the say in Derby games form goes out of the window so I take us to take this 2-0. Finally congratulations to Steven Gerrard who, if picked, will play his 400th Premiership game tonight.

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