London: Liverpool were left a point behind Premier League leaders Manchester City after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Everton in Sunday’s Merseyside derby.
City, who beat Bournemouth 1-0 on Saturday, have 71 points while Juergen Klopp’s Liverpool have 70 after their fourth draw in their last six games. Both sides have nine matches left.
Mohamed Salah had the two best openings for Liverpool before the break but his soft 15th minute shot barely troubled Jordan Pickford and then the Everton keeper was swift off his line to foil the Egyptian as he raced goalwards.
Everton’s approach was to harry and disrupt Liverpool and they did that task well but struggled to create opportunities with Theo Walcott unable to capitalise on a rare opening, screwing his shot wide.
Salah threatened again in the 57th minute as he bore down on Pickford but Everton defender Michael Keane stopped a near certain goal with a perfectly timed last-ditch sliding tackle.
Klopp threw on Roberto Firmino in the 63rd but the striker was unable to open up an Everton defence that raised their game to deal a blow to their local rivals’ title hopes.
Earlier, Jorginho fired Chelsea to a 2-1 win at struggling Fulham as Blues keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga began to make amends for his Wembley mutiny with an impressive display.
Maurizio Sarri’s side took the lead through Gonzalo Higuain before Calum Chambers equalised at Craven Cottage. In an incident-packed first half, the much-maligned Jorginho restored Chelsea’s lead with his first goal since the opening weekend of the season.
Chelsea were also indebted to Kepa for a series of superb saves that preserved their lead, lifting the sixth placed Blues within two points of fourth placed Manchester United.
Watford’s Andre Gray scored a stoppage-time winner as Leicester City began life under new boss Brendan Rodgers in underwhelming fashion, suffering a 2-1 defeat.
Eighth-placed Watford had taken the lead through Troy Deeney in the fifth minute. Leicester netted through Jamie Vardy.