Captain Steven Gerrard inspired Liverpool to their first win in four games as they brushed aside a weakened Everton side 3-0 at Anfield.

 

The Reds’ skipper marked his 400th Premier League appearance with a hat-trick against city rivals Everton as Liverpool held onto seventh place and prevented the Blues from overtaking them.

 

Gerrard, who was making his first league start

since early February, put the home side ahead

after half an hour when he chipped over a

disorientated Everton defence with his left foot.

 

The 31-year-old then doubled his side’s lead

with powerful close-range shot after Luis Suarez

had dribbled into the box before the Ururguayan

provided a tap-in for Gerrard and Liverpool’s third.

 

Liverpool went into the game on the back of

three consecutive league defeats, a streak that

hasn’t happened since 2003, but strong

performances from Suarez and Gerrard put a

stop to their poor run.

 

It was a relief for Kenny Dalglish’s side to get

back to winning ways. Their form in 2012 has

been disappointing, despite a thrilling Carling

Cup win in February.

 

It may be too late to make an assault on a highly-coveted

top four finish, as Arsenal are 10 points ahead of them

with only 10 games remaining.

 

David Moyes, who celebrates 10 years in charge at Everton this week, looked to have an eye on the FA Cup as he made six changes from the team that beat Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 at the weekend.

 

Their FA Cup quarter-final is against Sunderland, who beat Liverpool 1-0 on Saturday, and Moyes will be looking to take the Blues to Wembley. His decision to rest key players such as Tim Cahill and Johnny Heitinga underlined his desire to guide Everton to their first trophy since 1995.

 

Dalglish will now also turn his focus to an FA Cup quarter-final meeting with Stoke and a win against the Potters on Sunday would send Liverpool back to Wembley again.

 

carling_cup_final_gerrard_trophy

Gerrard hat-trick gives Liverpool derby win

By Hugh Currell, Deputy Website Editor

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Kenny Dalglish's team, captained by Gerrard, left Moyes without a win at Anfield during his 10-year reign

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