Former England striker Peter Crouch was full of compliments for Mason Holgate suggesting the Everton defender was “different class” during the derby, writing in his column for the Daily Mail.
Crouch’s glowing review came shortly after Everton’s historic 2-0 victory against Liverpool at the weekend.
It was the first time Everton had beaten the Reds for more than a decade and their only win at Anfield since 1999.
The win also meant Carlo Ancelotti’s side went level on points with their city rivals, ensuring the blue half of Merseyside will enjoy the bragging rights.
Mason the main man
Crouch wanted to highlight several Everton players who impressed him, with Holgate really catching his eye.
The former Liverpool forward said: “So many players made that result possible – Jordan Pickford was outstanding in goal.
“I loved the way Seamus Coleman kept Andy Robertson in check and Mason Holgate was brilliant.
“He needs to be mentioned. He’s different class and is going to be a top player.”
From pillar to post, Everton deployed their game plan perfectly.
Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson grabbed the goals either side of half-time, both latching on to wayward defending by Liverpool’s wobbly back line.
Ancelotti’s defence gave the Reds barely a sniff inside the penalty area, forcing them to shoot from range, which Pickford dealt with well.
Holgate featured as part of a back three, alongside Michael Keane and Ben Godfrey.
And, although Holgate took Crouch’s plaudits and was supremely assured, praise must also go to the two men beside him.
Keane made a game-high 13 clearances, while Godfrey was second with eight, according to WhoScored.com.
The pair also blocked one shot each and won five of their combined aerial duels (Keane three, Godfrey two).
Between them, the English trio were dominant and defiant all evening. That provided a base for Everton to build on and break Liverpool’s resistance.
Pick that one out
Pickford also deserves a major mention for his contribution between the sticks.
He made superb saves from Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum’s speculative efforts.
England and Everton’s number one also denied Mohamed Salah from close range to preserve a deserved clean sheet.
On this performance, Everton can be considered serious contenders for the Champions League places. Back to the drawing board for Liverpool.
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