So where do we start with that, then?
Outclassed, outthought, outfought.
The script was written before a ball had even been kicked. Everton didn’t believe they were good enough to go to Anfield and win. So it proved.
In the absence of key men Coleman and Schneiderlin, Koeman picked a young side to combat the energetic hosts.
What followed was just a rerun of the previous 18 years. Little else needs to be said at this point.
Here’s how the boys in blue rated:
Joel Robles- 3
Poorly positioned for goals one and three, the Spaniard rarely seemed comfortable on an afternoon when everything he did was panicked and hurried. Distribution left a lot to be desired, too.
Mason Holgate- 4
Handed the unenviable task of trying to replace the crocked Seamus Coleman and fell way short on the day. Wasted countless decent crossing opportunities, including a simple pass to Lukaku at 2-1, and struggled to get to grips with the likes of Coutinho and Firmino. A step too far at this stage.
Matty Pennington- 4
Thrown in at the deep end after a lengthy period on the sidelines and never looked like possessing the quality to cope with the threat of Mane and Co. Goal aside, showed inexperience in allowing Coutinho to come inside on his stronger foot on more than one occasion. Was punished once but could have been far more. In his defence, not afforded the necessary protection by senior players.
Ashley Williams- 3
Ponderous on the ball, easily turned by Origi for the third goal and part of a backline that was cut open at will. Was bought for his presence and leadership, yet showed neither of those two traits here.
Phil Jagielka- 5
The best of a bad bunch at the back, even if that says more about others’ shortcomings. Played on the left and was exposed less than some of his colleagues. Did well to win initial header for Pennington goal.
Leighton Baines- 5
Uncharacteristically sloppy in possession, yet at least attempted to get forward and add thrust in wide positions.
Idrissa Gueye- 4
One of Everton’s best players this season as a mobile, aggressive ball-winner in front of the defence, but was ineffective here. Sold himself in the build-up to Mane’s opener and allowed Coutinho to breeze past for the second. Chance was there to stamp his mark on proceedings against a midfield shorn of Henderson and Lallana; suffice to say he didn’t take it.
Tom Davies- 4
A peripheral figure after picking up an early booking. Not his finest display in a blue shirt.
Ross Barkley- 3
Has made progress in 2017 but this was a big step back for the Wavertree midfielder. Slow, ponderous and extremely lucky not to be sent off for a lunge on Dejan Lovren. Yet to influence a Merseyside derby to any real extent. That needs to change.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin- 5
Won his fair share of headers and put himself about enough to suggest that he’ll be a useful squad player for the remainder of the season. Beyond that, though, failed to get into dangerous positions with enough regularity. Not a winger and shouldn’t have been asked to play there.
Romelu Lukaku- 4
0 shots on target from the Premier League’s top scorer. Clearly thinks he’s good enough to play Champions League football but when push came to shove, fired another blank in a big away game. Top players influence these kinds of games, Rom.
Gareth Barry- 5
Brought some composure to a midfield that lacked brains.
Enner Valencia- 5
Full of energy and running upon his introduction.
Kevin Mirallas- N/A
Arrived far too late to influence proceedings. One promising run showed what Everton had missed from a player who usually shows up well in clashes of this ilk.