Preview: Liverpool vs. Everton

Liverpool's English midfielder Steven Gerrard (R) celebrates scoring a penalty against Tottenham on August 31, 2014
© Getty Images
Sports Mole looks ahead to the Merseyside derby between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield.

Liverpool and Everton will be hoping to put their poor recent runs of form behind them when they go head to head at Anfield in the first Merseyside derby of the season this weekend.

Brendan Rodgers's men have lost their last two matches in the Premier League, and needed a 30-shot penalty shootout to get past Championship side Middlesbrough in the Capital One Cup earlier this week.

Three defeats from their last four outings in the top flight have left them 11th in the table, seven points behind league leaders Chelsea.

Philippe Coutinho and Jordan Henderson both missed the League Cup outing with injuries, and are due to undergo assessments ahead of Saturday's match to determine whether they will be able to play a role.

Glen Johnson, Joe Allen, Emre Can and Daniel Sturridge have also been sidelined recently, although the latter is back in training, while Jon Flanagan is out after undergoing an operation on his knee.

Meanwhile, the Toffees have just one Premier League win under their belts this season heading into the clash with their neighbours.

Roberto Martinez's side suffered a surprise defeat to Crystal Palace last weekend, and were knocked out of the League Cup by Swansea City earlier this week.

There was some good news for the manager from the trip to the Liberty Stadium though, as defender Bryan Oviedo played almost an hour in his first match since sustaining a double leg break in January.

The Costa Rica international could feature this weekend, while Arouna Kone, who was named on the bench on Tuesday, and Steven Pienaar could also be in line for returns, but Seamus Coleman's involvement remains in doubt.

Liverpool have a good record against their local rivals in recent seasons, with two wins and three draws from their last five meetings, including a 4-0 win at Anfield last season.

Recent form

Liverpool: WLWLL

Everton: DDLWL

Possible starting lineups

Liverpool: Mignolet, Manquillo, Moreno, Lovren, Skrtel, Gerrard, Suso, Lucas, Sterling, Borini, Balotelli

Everton: Howard, Baines, Stones, Gibson, Jagielka, McCarthy, Barry, Mirallas, Osman, Lukaku, Atsu

Sports Mole says: 1-1

Who will win the Merseyside derby?

Liverpool's English midfielder Raheem Sterling (R) vies for the ball with Ludogorets Razgrad's Mihail Aleksandrov during the UEFA Champions League Group B match on September 16, 2014
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