LFC U18s 0 – 0 Tottenham Hotspur U18s

With just 6 days until the FA Youth Cup Semi-Final first leg, Steve Cooper’s Under 18s were back in action against top of the table spurs at Enfield, the home of Tottenham’s Academy. Liverpool had some key players back from injury including Captain Jordan Lussey, and striker Jerome Sinclair, however the latter started on the bench, whilst Lussey started even though he was still wearing his cask. It was great preparation for these players, as they can be tested at a high level of Under 18s football, before they face Chelsea at Anfield on 12th April. A game that is live on ITV4 and ITV4 HD.

It was the home side that started the brightly, as the league leaders looked to out pressure on Liverpool’s young defence. In the 9th minute, Spurs were awarded a free-kick it a dangerous position, which forced a good save out of Liverpool keeper Ryan Fulton. This free-kick was a huge wake up call for the visitors and it was the Reds who took control of the game and in the 23rd minute Daniel Trickett-Smith looked like he was going to give Liverpool the lead, but slipped at a vital moment to stop any chance of him continuing his goal scoring form. Chances were then few and far between, something that you don’t expect when 1st plays 3rd. The next real chance came just before half time, in the 41st minute, as Jordan Rossiter rose the highest, and his header forced a good save out of Spurs’ ‘keeper Luke McGee. This chance was the first in an action packed last 5 minutes of the half as a minute later, Tottenham looked like they were going to open the scoring, only to be denied by a brilliant quadruple save from Fulton in the Liverpool goal.

It was Tottenham who had a free-kick in a dangerous position earlier in the half and on the 43rd minute, it was Trickett-Smith’s turn, but the 17 year old saw his effort go narrowly wide. The Reds started to dominate in the closing stages and just a minute after Trickett-Smith’s free-kick, Jordan Rossiter supplied a near perfect pass to Ryan Kent, but the winger couldn’t convert his chance. The game went into the break with the score 0-0.

The start of the 2nd half ended the same where the 1st half ended, with Liverpool dominating the early stages. On the hour mark, the visitors thought they scored, but it was unfortunately disallowed. There was some good news for Liverpool at least, as striker Jerome Sinclair made his comeback from injury and the young striker is now likely to start against Chelsea U18s on Friday night.

As in the 1st half, chances were few and far between but as the game entered a nervous last 5 minutes, Tottenham had the best chance of the match on the 86th minute, as Spurs’ striker ran through the defence only to be denied yet again by an excellent one-on-one save from Fulton. There was some concern in the Liverpool dressing room as Daniel Trickett-Smith started limping in the 89th minute, but it was later confirmed that he had a minor dead leg, so will be fit for the FA Youth Cup Semi Final.

Liverpool fought very hard for their point, and the result will give the young Reds plenty of confidence as their next game is probably the biggest games of their lives, as they face a strong Chelsea side in the FA Youth Cup Semi Final 1st leg at Anfield. The stalemate means that Steve Cooper’s side are still 4 points behind Spurs with 2 games in hand and now level on points with Sunderland.

Scott Taylor

LFC XI: Fulton, Baio, Gainford, Whelan, Cleary, Lussey, Rossiter, Brannagan, Kent, Trickett-Smith, Dunn.

Due to lack of information and the game not being shown on LFCTV, I wasn’t able to find out the Tottenham starting Line-Up.

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