By Scott Taylor
Harry Wilson made his comeback from a long-term injury but Liverpool U21s ended their pre-season tour of Germany with a 1-0 defeat at Erzgebirge Aue on Wednesday night. Head Coach Michael Beale was looking to finish the tour unbeaten after the 1-1 draw at Sonnerhof in the opening game last week. However, Christian Tiffert scored the only goal of the game to inflict defeat on the young Reds, who will be boosted by the return of Welsh winger Wilson after 5 months out with a broken toe.
Beale fielded a mix of youth and experience for the game, with U18s defenders Conor Masterson and Kane Lewis alongside captain Lloyd Jones, with U21s spearhead Jack Dunn leading the line.
In usual Liverpool fashion, they got off to a quick start with the ever-changing attacking quarter of Dunn, Madger Gomes, Bobby Adekanye and Brooks Lennon creating problems for the Bundesliga 2. side.
Dunn went closest to scoring for the visitors, but his shot was denied by Erzgebirge goalkeeper Martin Mannel as the Reds looked to score against a side coming into this tie on the back of a 31-0 victory.
That confidence in front of goal eventually showed for the hosts, as Austrian winger Tiffert moved his way past the back-four before firing beyond the reach of Reds ‘keeper Andy Firth.
Beale made changes at half-time including the introduction of Wilson and U18s goal machine Toni Gomes, who both went close to finding an equaliser.
Despite this, Liverpool U21s end their brief trip to Germany with a defeat and will look to get their first win of the 2016/17 season preparations when they travel to Rhyl on Sunday 24 July.
The fixture against the Welsh side is the start of a chaotic period for Beale and his young chargers, who will play Rhyl, Celtic, Morecambe and the MK Dons over the space of just ten days.