Gerrard treble sinks Toffees

Tue, 13 Mar 22:46:02 2012

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard marked his 400th league appearance with a hat-trick in a 3-0 victory to settle the 217th Merseyside derby at Anfield.

In doing so Gerrard became the first player to register a treble in a league derby since Ian Rush scored four in a 5-0 win at Goodison in November 1982 and only the fifth Liverpool player to do so at Anfield - the last coming from Fred Howe in September 1935.

He ensured Kenny Dalglish's side avoided a fourth successive league defeat - something which had happened to the Reds only four times in 60 years. His goals also spoiled David Moyes' 10th anniversary with the Toffees - which he marks on Wednesday.

The breakthrough came in the 34th minute when Martin Kelly's shot was half-stopped by Tim Howard and Sylvain Distin could only clear as far as Gerrard, who curled an inch-perfect first-time left-footed shot over the heads of defenders and goalkeeper and into the net.

Everton's brighter start to the second half was extinguished just six minutes after the restart when Gerrard struck again. Luis Suarez chased Jordan Henderson's pass into the corner, cut past Distin along the right byline and shepherded the ball towards the onrushing captain who blasted home. The closest Everton came to scoring was when a Jack Rodwell shot was cleared by Jose Enrique a couple of yards out.

In added time, Gerrard put the seal on another impressive personal display by starting and finishing the move, exchanging passes with Suarez, to knock in his third.

 

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