Curtis Jones and Wayne Rooney, Liverpudlians at opposite ends of their soccer careers, played starring roles in the FA Cup on Sunday.
Local-born academy product Jones, a highly rated 18-year-old winger, scored a goal he may never better to earn Liverpool a 1-0 win over Everton in a Merseyside derby that had a familiar result at Anfield.
Collecting the ball outside the area on the left, Jones curled a shot into the far corner off the underside of the crossbar on 71 minutes.
“They played brave football. Unbelievable individual performances from the kids and the adults as well,” Klopp, who selected a slew of youth players in an inexperienced team, said.
“Sensational game and a sensational goal from a Scouser — who could ask for more?”
Curtis Jones with a stunner.😍 pic.twitter.com/cYeYdMU5Bz
— Kloppholic (@Kloppholic) January 5, 2020
It was a strike that evoked memories of one scored by Rooney, for Everton against Arsenal in 2002 as a 16-year-old, that also flew in off the bar and rocketed him to stardom.
Eighteen years on, and now a deep-lying midfielder in the twilight of his career, the 34-year-old Rooney is still proving his worth as second-tier Derby County’s captain.
He helped inspire them to a 1-0 win at Crystal Palace, who became the third Premier League team to lose to lower-league opposition at the third-round stage this season.
“He influenced the game a lot because you could see his experience,” Derby manager Phillip Cocu said of Rooney, who had 77 touches of the ball – more than any other Derby player.
Palace skipper Luka Milivojevic became the first player in an English match to be sent off as a result of a referee reviewing an incident on a pitch-side monitor during the loss.
As for Everton, they have yet to win at Anfield since 1999 and haven’t won a derby match in any competition, anywhere, since 2010.
Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti fielded a strong line-up but was left unimpressed by his players.
“I am not used to speaking to the players after the game but I am going to speak to them about this,” the Italian said.
Tottenham’s honeymoon period under Jose Mourinho looks to be over as they had to come from a goal down to draw 1-1 at second-tier Middlesbrough – managed by former Spurs defender Jonathan Woodgate.
Lucas Moura headed in the equaliser in the 61st to rescue Spurs, who fell behind to Ashley Fletcher’s goal in the 50th.
Chelsea manager Frank Lampard fielded his reserves for the visit of Nottingham Forest and one stood out in a 2-0 win.
Callum Hudson-Odoi drilled home the opener for his first goal in four months, then had a hand in Ross Barkley’s sealer.
Sheffield United scraped to a 2-1 win over AFC Fylde, the last non-league team remaining in the competition, while West Ham beat third-tier Gillingham 2-0 thanks to second-half goals by substitutes Pablo Zabaleta and Pablo Formals.
Queens Park Rangers, Barnsley and West Bromwich Albion, all from the second tier, were other teams to advance.
Arsenal host Championship leaders Leeds on Monday, when the draw for the fourth round takes place.