FA Cup: Van Dijk Debut Header Sinks Everton In Merseyside Derby, As United Beat Derby County To Advance
New signing Virgil van Dijk enjoyed a dream debut for Liverpool by heading the winner in the Merseyside derby as they knocked Everton out of the FA Cup at Anfield on Friday.
On a feisty night under the Anfield lights, the world’s most expensive defender proved he can be effective at both ends of the pitch by nodding in an 84th-minute corner to make it 2-1.
The Holland international becomes the first player to score a winner at Anfield in an FA Cup tie against Everton, at the fifth time of asking. Gylfi Sigurdsson’s 67th-minute goal had earlier cancelled out James Milner’s first-half penalty in a blood-and-thunder contest which threatened to be tainted by a first-half flare-up between Mason Holgate, who conceded the spot-kick, and Roberto Firmino.
In the same area where Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin won a controversial penalty in last month’s 1-1 draw after Dejan Lovren laid a hand on him, referee Madley had no hesitation in pointing to the spot and Milner fired straight down the middle.
Liverpool were made to pay for missing chances as an improving Everton launched a counter-attack from a corner which ended with Phil Jagielka teeing up Sigurdsson to place a shot past a static Loris Karius.
Van Dijk had the final word, however, to give manager Jurgen Klopp his first FA Cup win at the fifth time of asking – also setting a new unwanted record for Everton, who have now gone 16 derbies without a win.
Elsewhere at Old Trafford, two late goals by in-form Jesse Lingard and fit-again striker Romelu Lukaku helped Manchester United to reach the FA Cup fourth round as they ground out a 2-0 home win over Championship side Derby County on Friday.
United had missed a string of chances as Lingard hit the post with a fierce arrowed shot several minutes before he broke the deadlock. Carson fired a shot into the top left corner from 18 metres and with Derby throwing caution to the wind, Lukaku raced clear to score his 16th goal for United in all competitions.