5 Reasons the Liverpool vs. Everton Rivalry Comes with Mutual Respect

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5 Reasons the Liverpool vs. Everton Rivalry Comes with Mutual Respect
Courtesy of The Liverpool Word

Liverpool travel to Goodison Park this coming weekend to play Everton in the 219th Merseyside Derby. It is a contest which, regardless of league position, remains one of the biggest and most hotly anticipated matches in the English football calender.

The Merseyside Derby and the rivalry between Liverpool and Everton truly is like no other.

It is a match played between two teams whose home grounds are a mile apart. It is a match that possibly never would have taken place had it not been for a falling out between Everton and the owner of Anfield, Mr John Houlding, in 1892.

Having been the original tenants of Anfield, the Blues were forced to move across Stanley Park and found Goodison Park, which remains their home ground today. 

The roots of the rivalry were formed from that point on and began to develop even further with the first meeting of the teams in 1894.

In the 118 years since that first match, there has rarely been a season where the two clubs didn't face off against each other. Currently, it holds the record for the most consecutive seasons featuring a league derby between two neighbouring clubs, having been played every season since the 1962/63 season.

The match itself has known several names; initially it was the City of Liverpool Derby, and many referred to it as a Lancaster derby. Then it became the Merseyside Derby.

Despite the fact that the county of Merseyside wasn't established until the mid-1970s, the term "Merseyside Derby" actually pre-dates that by some 20 years.

These titles have never been much more than media names for the match. The locals have always and will always simply refer to it as "The Derby."

The main thing that separates the Merseyside Derby from all others is the relationship between the fans. It is truly unique, much like the city that stages the event. It is a match, and indeed a rivalry which, despite whatever may happen on or around the football, is built on respect between the fans.

Go to the Manchester Derby, the North London Derby, the Glasgow Derby or any other you can think of and you won't see scenes like you will at a Merseyside Derby. You won't see opposition fans sitting amongst each other, you won't see young fans of one club helping an elderly fan of the other to and from their seat. 

So why such ingrained respect? Here are five reasons for it.

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