Joel Robles Everton Sadio Mane Liverpool
Liverpool forward Sadio Mane gets ahead of the Everton defenders to score the winning goal for Everton in the Merseyside derby, December 19, 2016Reuters

Liverpool did what many a title-winning team have done in the past – find a way to score the winner, late in the game to take out all three points. Needing the victory to keep the gap to Premier League leaders Chelsea to six points, Jurgen Klopp's side managed to eke out a win, just.

Sadio Mane was the man of the moment, jumping onto a rebound quicker than any of the by-then-jaded Everton defenders in the fourth minute of stoppage time to give Liverpool a 1-0 victory in the Merseyside derby and leave the majority of Goodison Park stunned.

Liverpool recovered from a slow first half to dominate the second, but the goal just would not come their way in a tense derby match. With eight minutes of stoppage time added on owing to an injury to Everton goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg and a Ross Barkley foul on Jordan Henderson, which should have led to a red card for the playmaker, Liverpool plugged away, with the team finally rewarded when Mane struck.

Daniel Sturridge came off the bench to make the desired impact, making space for himself to take a strike on goal from the edge of the box That strike would go on to hit the post, with Mane reacting quickest to turn in the rebound and send the away fans and Jurgen Klopp into delirium.

The Liverpool win did not look like coming going by their performance in the first half, with Everton quicker out of the blocks, using their all-action, physical style which had worked so well in their come-from-behind 2-1 win over Arsenal. However, despite being the better team in the first 45, Everton could not carve out enough chances to test the goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.

Liverpool were always going to have a phase where they found their groove or at least dominated the proceedings and they came out in the second half a much better side. Roberto Firmino had a great chance early in the second period, but his effort was brilliantly saved by Stekelenburg, who would later leave the pitch after a coming together with teammate Leighton Baines.

Barkley could have easily seen red for a reckless tackle on Henderson with half an hour still remaining in the contest, but with Mike Dean deciding to give a yellow instead, the game remained on a knife's edge, before Mane tilted it in Liverpool's favour.

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