Two goals from Cristian Ceballos and Kenny McEvoy’s late third took the team’s record to eight wins, a draw and one defeat in 10 matches in the second phase of the Barclays U21 Premier League and stretched their lead to 10 points from United in the Elite Group.
Monday’s win in front of over 2,000 fans at Anfield came with six Academy trainees in the starting line-up as 13 players who have featured for the U21s this season are now away on loan.
“It’s one of the better performances and it means that little more because there was a decent crowd there and some of the lads would never have played at a stadium of that calibre and history,” said Chris, our Senior Professional Phase Coach.
“Players from both teams went down with cramp and a lot of that was down to the emotional energy that a game like that draws out of you.
“As far as individual performances were concerned, Nabil Bentaleb was outstanding, the best player on the pitch with Laste Dombaxe and Milos Veljkovic not far behind. That’s where we won the game. It was also good to see Lawrence Vigouroux back to his confident best in goal and he made a fine save in the last minute.”
The biggest compliment is to say the players out on loan weren’t missed as the lads dominated and should really have been out of sight before Liverpool replied and then struck the woodwork in the space of a minute. The comeback didn’t materialise though before McEvoy’s fine strike sealed it.
“It was a great learning curve for the lads in terms of not being clinical with the chances and suddenly, Liverpool got back into it and we were a bit jittery,” added Chris. “We had four clear-cut chances in the second half before they scored, but we took control again after that.”
The win means the team’s overall record in both phases of the Barclays U21 Premier League so far is 15 wins, three draws and four defeats from 22 matches, scoring an amazing 75 goals along the way. Two of the defeats came in the first two matches of the season in August.