The Reds had to wait until the 75th minute to break the deadlock at Anfield, with Mohamed Salah converting from the spot following a handball by Blues defender Michael Keane.
Sean Dyche’s side were reduced to 10 men shortly before the interval when Ashley Young was shown a second yellow card for his challenge on Luis Diaz and Everton frustrated Liverpool by sitting deep after the break.
Assistant manager Pepijn Lijnders has been credited for his role in helping the Reds to find a way through, with footage captured by @Asim_LFC from behind the dugout showcasing his involvement on the touchline.
The influence of Pep Lijnders ?
A big shoutout to Pep for his heavy influence on the strategic changes yesterday. Gravenberch’s substitution raised some eyebrows, but the move aimed to boost left-side goal threat with Szobo and Harvey securing ball retention on the right. #LFC pic.twitter.com/HvbG0O4r9J
— AsimLFC (@asim_lfc) October 22, 2023
Diaz was employed as a left wing-back following Darwin Nunez‘s introduction in the second period, a move which enabled Klopp to keep the Colombian on the pitch while allowing Nunez to join Diogo Jota and Salah in the front three.
He was unfortunate not to be awarded a penalty having been fouled by Nathan Patterson in the area, but Diaz did earn his side a spot-kick moments later as he lifted the ball onto the outstretched arm of Michael Keane.
In the same Twitter thread, the manager could be seen giving his right-hand man a warm hug towards the end of the contest, highlighting his gratitude for the role he played in getting the team over the line.
Klopp explained after the match that Everton “didn’t have a winger” on the right-hand side having lost a man in the first half, something which enabled the Reds to pursue attacking avenues down Diaz’s side.
The Liverpool boss joked that the move was “not the worst idea” given the No. 7’s impact, with his side going on to pick up all three points from a game that could have slipped away from them.
There is no guarantee we will ever see Diaz operate in that role again, but in that particular situation, it was a tactical shift that paid dividends for the Reds as they made it six league wins from nine this season.