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Stoke City (A) Wed 4 Mar 2015, 19:45, Barclays Premier League


Gareth Barry wants Evertonians to be striding through the city with pride after the Merseyside derby next weekend.

Having previously participated in several all-Birmingham and Manchester contests, Barry is set to line-up against Liverpool for the first time since becoming a Toffee earlier this season.

Games against Birmingham City and Manchester United for the former Villa and City man have provided him with some of the best memories in his career.

Even now, at the age of 32, Barry says nothing compares to the ‘special’ derby atmosphere - and he hopes to cap his first appearance in the cross-Stanley Park fixture with a win for the fans.

“I don’t think too many can compete with the 6-1 for Manchester City at Manchester United. Also Aston Villa beat Birmingham 5-1, so I have had some fantastic scorelines in that respect,” Barry told evertontv.

“If you win that [derby] game you can walk around the street with a big smile on your face, if you lose it you want to stay in the house for the next week or two.

“It’s exactly the same in every city. Hopefully Everton fans can walk around Liverpool with smiles on their faces.”

Gareth Barry Cameron Jerome

“I’m really looking forward to the game,” Barry continued. “Derbies - wherever you are - are the fixtures that the fans look out for. The players get excited too, because they create special atmospheres.

“Having watched the Merseyside derbies over the years, I’m really looking forward to being part of one.”

Barry has played four times at Goodison Park since making the loan switch from Manchester City – but he has been told by his Blues colleagues to expect something unique inside the Grand Old Lady a week on Saturday.

He added: “The home games have been great atmospheres and our home record [this season] has been really good. It’s important that we try to keep that going and this is a massive test to see how far we have come because Liverpool are flying at the moment.

“I’m just looking forward to it because I have never had any taste of it at all. The other lads say it is a special occasion and I’m sure the fans will make it special too.”

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