Everton 0-0 Liverpool: WSL goalless draw 'did not feel like a derby', says Reds boss Matt Beard

Matt Beard

Liverpool manager Matt Beard said it "did not feel like a derby" following their goalless draw with Everton at Goodison Park.

The Reds moved up to fourth in the Women's Super League (WSL) table, a point above Manchester United.

However, there were few clear-cut chances in the game, which was played in front of less than 10,000 fans.

"It didn't feel like a derby. The pitch was dry, the grass was long - it slowed a lot down," said Beard.

"There were a lot of injuries and the game kept getting stopped. It was disappointing to play on a Premier League ground and the pitch to be as long and slow as it was.

"It definitely had an effect on our game. But if we can't win it, we need to take a point and we did that. [It was] definitely a missed opportunity in the first half, I felt we were really comfortable and dominated the game.

"We need to be more clinical in the moments when we get into good positions. So to not take those opportunities was frustrating."

Beard said the game felt "flat" because of several injury stoppages but was pleased with a clean sheet and a draw despite Liverpool beating Everton just once in their past eight WSL meetings.

"The progress we've made in such a short space of time is good. We are finding ourselves in that battle with Manchester United and a win would have been really important for us to close the gap on the top three," he added.

"But it was never going to be an easy game. I said to the players that this would probably be Everton's cup final as they have nothing else to play for - so we knew it would be a tough afternoon."

Sorensen 'probably would have taken draw'

Liverpool came into the game in good form, while Everton were the perceived underdogs despite playing at home because of an injury crisis which has hampered their season.

They sit third from bottom but managed to hold on to a draw against their rivals with only one recognised central defender on the pitch.

Asked if they would have taken a point before kick-off, manager Brian Sorensen said: "Yeah, probably, with where we're at in terms of how many [players] we have out. Also, with the form Liverpool have shown this season, probably yes.

"In the second half, when I look back, [I'm] a bit disappointed we couldn't manage to put one in. It was a tight game. There was a little too many stoppages with injuries.

"Overall, with where we're at, we're happy they didn't sneak one in on one of those transitions but also disappointed we didn't capitalise on a very good second half."

Everton's campaign may have fizzled out but Sorensen has received praise for their handling of an injury crisis - and he joked he did not need to invest in defenders this summer because of the impressive performances of players filling in out of position.

"I'm pleased with the squad. We've been consistent in everything we've been doing," he added.

"It's been one of those seasons that we have so many out. Getting wins has been tough. Big credit to the girls. They had that extra gear in the second half to step it up."

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