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Martin Sherif bags dramatic late equaliser in the mini-derby

[Photo by Nick Taylor]

A brace from Martin Sherif was enough to maintain Everton’s unbeaten run in the U18 Premier League North as they earned a point in the mini-derby away at Liverpool.

Karim Ahmed and Elijah Gift twice put Liverpool ahead, but they could not hold onto the lead as Sherif and Everton fought back well to get a deserved draw.

The Reds came into the game off the back of a 1-0 victory over Port Vale in the FA Youth Cup but having lost all of their last four in the league.

Quite the opposite for the Toffees, who came into the clash unbeaten in three in the league but suffering a shock elimination at the hands of Watford in the Youth Cup.

Everton ran out 2-1 winners the last time these two met back in November courtesy of goals from Coby Ebere and Martin Sherif.

The Reds took the lead in the fourth minute when Gift pinched the ball high up the field and drove into the box before cutting inside.

Ahmed nicked in front of his teammate and fired into the net to mark his first start at U18 level with his first league goal of the season.

Everton equalised in the 40th minute when Owen Barker caught Fola Onanuga in possession before breaking into the box and pulling back for Sherif who hit the target against Liverpool for the second time this season.

Liverpool regained the lead in the 59th minute when Cody Pennington released Gift into the Everton half. The winger broke forward and whipped a stunning effort into the bottom corner from around 25 yards.

The Toffees grabbed a late leveller in the 89th minute when Matthew Apter played Sherif in behind who calmly rolled the ball through the legs of Fabian Mrozek for his sixth goal of the season.

The Reds went close to winning it in stoppage time when Josh Davidson’s cross beat everyone and bounced off the post before Trent Kone-Doherty fired the rebound into the side netting.

Everton went straight down the other end and almost won it themselves as Sherif got in behind again but was denied a mini-derby hat-trick by a great stop from Mrozek.

The draw extends Everton’s unbeaten run to four league games whilst Liverpool continue to look for their first league win since October.

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