Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn both won awards at Liverpool’s award ceremony on Tuesday night to cap off a brilliant season for the Academy.
Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn continue to be the success story out of the Kirkby Academy in another good week for the pair.
Alexander-Arnold won Liverpool’s ‘Young Player of the Year’ award on Tuesday night after making 12 first-team appearances and being on the bench a further 14 times.
Welsh youngster Woodburn picked up the ‘Academy Player of the Year’ in a season where he became the club’s youngest ever goal scorer to go with his eight goals and six assists for the U23s this season.
However, the pair weren’t the only contenders, with Harry Wilson unlucky to miss out after scoring 28 goals this season whilst Rhian Brewster also performed in his breakthrough season with the U23s.
Mike Garrity’s side ended their Premier League 2 season on a high with a 2-1 victory over Merseyside rivals Everton at Goodison Park on Monday evening, crashing the party for the hosts, who were crowned Premier League 2 champions.
Sheyi Ojo put the visitors ahead, as Wilson won the ball off Matthew Pennington before teeing up the England youth international to slot home after filling in at centre-forward in place of Brewster.
Alexander-Arnold can do no wrong recently, and his purple patch continued with a finish that is reminiscent of Carlos Alberto’s strike for Brazil in the 1970 World Cup Final, after being set up by Marko Grujic.
Calum Dyson pulled a goal back for the hosts late on in fortunate circumstances, with the ball ricocheting off Nathaniel Phillips in the 83rd minute, but Liverpool held on to finish third and end their season on a high.
Garrity and his side will now look forward to the Lancashire Senior Cup final later this month, where they will look to officially sign off a good season with a piece of silverware.
Liverpool U23s: Grabara; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Gomez, Randall; Virtue (Williams 74’), Ejaria, Grujic; Wilson, Ojo, Woodburn (Hart 93’).
Several players from the Liverpool U23s side continued their development by getting the opportunity to train with the first-team at Melwood this week.
Shamal George and Kamil Grabara took part alongside Woodburn, Alexander-Arnold, Wilson, Randall and Grujic, whilst Kevin Stewart made his return to training after a hernia problem.
One player who was absent from both training and match days was striker Rhian Brewster. Brewster was again in the goals as England’s U17s thrashed Ukraine 4-0 in the U17s European Championships.
The former Chelsea forward started off the tournament in fine fashion, netting a brace in the Young Lions’ opening game in the 3-1 win over Norway.
Elsewhere, Liverpool’s U18s had a week off from Premier League play-off action, but Neil Critchley’s side suffered a 2-0 defeat to Loughborough University in a friendly on Wednesday.
Despite the result, it was an opportunity for the Reds’ Head Coach to give minutes to some fringe players in the squad, as some of the regulars will look to make the step up to the U23s next season.
There was also a return from injury for Herbie Kane, who has been sidelined for months with a long-term injury as he looks to get back to full fitness.
Liverpool U18s: Kelleher (B Williams 45’); N Williams (Sharif 45’), R Williams, Johnston, Glennon (Clayton 80’); Coyle (Lewis 45’), Longstaff, Jones (Kane 62’); Camacho (Simmonds 68’), Millar (Adekanye 45’), McAuley (Blair 80’).
Written by Scott Taylor