Upon returning to the game as a second-half substitute, Gueye failed to make enough of an impact on the match to drive his team to victory, despite helping Everton to make a promising late push to settle the derby in the last 10 minutes. It was all a little too late for Everton, and the derby ended with an uneventful 0-0 draw.
Midfielder Gueye was sent back from international duty at Senegal after his international manager noticed he had arrived with an already torn muscle. Manager Aliou Cisse was perceptive enough to notice that Gueye was not in top shape, a skill that not everyone can claim to have. Take the How Perceptive are You quiz to find out whether you have what it takes to be a world-class football manager. The midfielder was declared out of action for the following few weeks and missed his international friendly matches as well as several crucial games for Everton.
Gueye was brought back into play as a substitute for Wayne Rooney in the early minutes of the second half, a decision that Rooney was less than happy about, but one which seemed to benefit the overall strength of the Everton midfield.
Liverpool started with what was a B-side, which is understandable following their Champions League quarter-finals clash with Manchester City earlier in the week. Their starting line-up lacked Salah and Firmino, yet Everton still didn’t manage to capitalize.
Jordan Pickford was tested almost constantly in the first half, saving shots from Dominic Solanke, James Milner and Vigil van Dyke. Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius also had to make impressive saves, namely a curling shot from an otherwise docile Bolasie. Both will be happy with their clean sheets in the end.
Liverpool held control of much of the game, and it wasn’t until the last 10 minutes, shortly after Baningime was subbed in that Everton made an impact. Both Seamus Coleman and Dominic Calvert-Lewin nearly grabbed late winners supported by a much stronger second-half midfield. It’s great to see Idrissa Gueye back in action, but hopefully, he can make more of an impact on the next game, perhaps as part of the starting 11.