In general, he might not be enjoying his best season yet at Goodison Park but Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford proved to the footballing world on Sunday just why he is such an important player to the club.
The Toffees surprisingly kept their neighbours Liverpool at bay in a goalless draw at home in the much anticipated Merseyside derby, although it probably wasn’t the best of matches fans were hoping for.
But, it could’ve been much worse for Marco Silva and his men if Liverpool winger Mohamed Salah managed to score in the first-half after he was brilliantly kept out by Pickford.
The Egyptian sprinted away from the Everton defence after receiving the ball in heaps of space, leaving him one-on-one with the England shot-stopper.
The 24-year-old Pickford stood his ground, trying to put Salah off, before making a spectacular right-handed save to deny the former Roma forward of finding the back of the net.
The position in which the Liverpool star took the shot has become a famous sign in the Premier League as he usually scores when given the opportunity to open up his body and take the shot on his preferred left-foot.
The save again proved why Pickford – who is now valued at £36m by Transfermarkt – is such a recognised figure in-goal and the massive amount of talent he possesses.
Pickford was at fault in the previous occasion of this derby when he embarrassingly fumbled a high at Anfield in December, which led to Divock Origi scoring the winner in the sixth minute of stoppage time.
The former Sunderland player definitely made amends for that horrible error on Sunday and looked very comfortable at the back.
Everton were always going to be under some pressure from the start due to Liverpool’s lethal attacking options, but the Toffees did well to keep them out in the end, largely down to Pickford’s performance.
His showing and the result should, therefore, inspire the rest of the Everton team to get their campaign back on track and finish the season on a high.
After a poor start to the New Year, Everton will need to start picking up points somewhere and a trip to Newcastle this coming weekend could be the perfect opportunity for that.