The Merseyside XI: Which Liverpool and Everton players make combined team?

Merseyside Derby

Now we are over a third of the way through the Premier League season, which players from Liverpool and Everton make our combined XI?

The Reds and Blues sit ninth and seventh place in the table respectively after 13 games with identical records of five wins, five draws and three defeats each

The Toffees have the more potent attacking force so far, scoring 24 goals to Liverpool's 17 while both sides have similar defensive records, Everton conceding 16 - one more than Liverpool.

Both teams are on an upward trend of late and enjoyed comfortable wins at the weekend, Liverpool thrashing Manchester City 4-1 and Everton seeing off Aston Villa 4-0.

But which players make it into a Merseyside XI playing in the 4-2-3-1 formation favoured by both sides now we are over a third of the way through the campaign?

GK: Tim Howard

One of the toughest choices of the lot. Both 'keepers are top drawer on their day but both have experienced blips so far this season. However Howard, back to his best in recent weeks, just gets the nod for his all round game and the way he commands his area. Howard is just so influential for Roberto Martinez's side and so often makes a crucial save which turns a game in Everton's favour. Mignolet has steadily improve in a Liverpool shirt but Howard has bags more experience.

RB: Nathaniel Clyne

The England right back gets up and down the right hand side all day long and offers just as much attacking threat as he does defensive security. This was another tough choice between Clyne and Seamus Coleman but Clyne athleticism just about gives him the nod over the Irishman.

CB: John Stones

The name on the lips of top managers across Europe Everton did brilliantly to hold on to Stones who could so easily be at Chelsea right now. Showing his class for club and country this season with his libero grande style bringing the ball out from the back. A cert for this Merseyside XI and the jewel in the defensive crown too.

CB: Martin Skrtel

Would have been a close call between Skrtel and Jagielka but the latter's injury last month gives the Liverpool man the nod. Got a goal last time out and always give 100%, he is a true defender in every sense. Prone to the odd error where Jagielka isn't but having a good season so far.

LB: Alberto Moreno

As good as Galloway has been for the Toffees, Moreno comes in at left back thanks to a superb turnaround in his Anfield career. The Spaniard had been linked with a move away after a torrid first season in the Premier League. But he has found his feet and is quick, fierce in the tackle and good going forward too.

CDM: James Milner

Already looks like he has been with Liverpool for years and has slotted straight in following his move from Manchester City. Milner gives Jurgen Klopp's side so much versatility and quality in the middle of the park. One of the first names on the Merseyside XI teamsheet.

CDM: Lucas

Looked to be on his way out of the club at the end of August but has turned things around and is now a key cog in Klopp's new pressing style. The midfield anchor who allows the more gifted midfielders to shine, sitting in and breaking up play ready to launch counter attacks.

AM: Ross Barkley

The enigmatic English talent has been in fine form this season and has been shining for club and country. Links up with Romelu Lukaku brilliantly and is an easy choice.

AM: Gerrard Deulofeu

The Spaniard has been so good recently there is already talk of his former club Barcelona activating the 'buy-back' clause in the deal. Was one of the stars of the Everton team during his loan spell and has added strength to his play to take his game on to another level.

AM: Philippe Coutinho

The little Brazilian magician has been instrumental for Klopp's side and one of the stars of the Premier League season so far. His goals, assists and all round play make him a pleasure to watch and one of the easiest picks for this team. If he continues his form from the first third of the season he will be in the running for player of the year.

ST: Romelu Lukaku

Injuries to both Daniel Sturridge and Christian Benteke made what should have been a very tough choice relatively easy. The big Belgian is a goal machine and would bring his unerring finishing quality to the silky freeflowing moves weaved together by the classy trio behind him.

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