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Liverpool u18 3 Middlesbrough u18 0 (Apr 24 2010)

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LIVERPOOL U18 3 Middlesbrough u18 0

Report by Dave Usher at the Academy



Scorer(s) - Michael Ngoo, Tom Ince, Krizstian Adorjan

Half Time - 1-0

Venue - Liverpool Academy, Kirkby

Date - Sat 24 April 2010

Star Man - Tom Ince













Liverpool's u18 side continued their recent good form with an impressive 3-0 defeat of Middlesbrough at the Academy yesterday afternoon. Rodolfo Borrell's side enjoyed themselves in the Kirkby sunshine, as excellent goals from Michael Ngoo, Tom Ince and Krizstian Adorjan saw off the Teessiders in an entertaining contest.


The reds lined up in their usual 4-2-3-1 formation, with Ngoo the lone frontman supported by Ince, Adorjan and Tony Silva. Craig Roddan partnered skipper Connor Coady in midfield, with a back four of John Flanagan, Andre Wisdom, Stephen Sama and Jack Robinson. Chris Oldfield was between the sticks. Recent signing from QPR Raheem Sterling was on the bench.


Unbeaten in their last seven games, Liverpool began the game in confident fashion and could have scored in the opening few minutes when Adorjan's shot from the edge of the box was well saved by the Boro keeper. Coady was very unlucky to go into the book in the opening minutes, the referee getting it badly wrong as the Liverpool skipper went into a 50-50 and won the ball. Midfield partner Craig Roddan followed him into the refs notebook a little later, but he could have no complaints about the decision.


Ngoo was looking dangerous, and he shot into the side netting after getting clear in the inside right channel. He should have crossed to the unmarked Ince, and in his defence he may have even been trying to do that, as I'm not entirely sure it was a shot.


There was no such confusion about the shot he hit shortly afterwards however, as he turned nicely and created room for himself, before leathering the ball into the top corner from just inside the box. He's had an up and down season, but seems to be ending it on a high and has been amongst the goals lately.


The lead was almost doubled less than a minute later, but Ince's low shot from the edge of the box rolled inches wide of the post. Ince then turned provider, escaping down the right and clipping a cross in towards Ngoo. It seemed like a certain goal, but just as Ngoo was setting himself to plant a header goalwards, a Boro defender got the faintest of touches to divert it away from him.


Boro had not threatened Oldfield's goal much, but they had looked quite lively in attack. The right winger and the centre forward both looked quite useful, and they had some promising situations that didn't really come to anything as generally there was always a covering Liverpool defender to snuff out any danger.


The one time they did manage to carve out a clear opening, Oldfield made a stunning save to turn away a powerful blast that was headed for the top corner. The save was a pivotal moment in the game, as had that gone in it would have levelled the scores. Oldfield ensured the advantage remained with the reds, and two minutes later Tom Ince doubled it with a superb strike after being released by Adorjan. Ince was impressive and was a danger throughout, he fully deserved his goal and he almost added another with a fine lob from just inside the Boro half that had the keeper beaten but drifted just wide.


There was a funny incident immediately after the goal, as Boro's keeper picked the ball from the net and attempted to smash it downfield in frustration. It smacked against the back of Portuguese winger Tony Silva, who was none too impressed. "Eh, what are you doing, lad?" he snarled. The words were scouse, the accent most definitely not and it was very funny. The referee intervened and calm was restored.


Silva was replaced not long afterwards, but it was certainly not a reflection of his performance as he did well and only a fingertip save by the keeper had kept him off the scoresheet. The change was just about giving another talented 16 year, Raheem Sterling, old a run out. Silva and Sterling are both still eligible for the u16 side, which means they'll be a part of the u18s for a couple more years yet unless they are fast-tracked through to the reserves. Both are very exciting, skillful, pacy players who can play in a number of forward positions, and the 'Sterling Silva' combination will have headline writers everywhere salivating!


Raheem wasted little time making his mark on this game, fooling a defender to create space for himself before whipping in a perfect cross that was neatly passed into the net by the unmarked Adorjan. The goal made the scoreline look a bit more realistic, as the reds were by far the better side on the day and played some nice football. It could have been more than three, but that would have been harsh on Boro as they weren't that bad.


Their frustration boiled over right at the end though, as their right back was given a straight red for going right through Ince and then appearing to stamp on him. Ince's team-mates weren't impressed, heckling the Boro player as he left the field. "Gerroff you, yer cunt" yelled one of the back four, who's identity shall remain protected in case his parents are reading!


Star man could have been any one of a number of players. Andre Wisdom was the pick of a defence who all played well, Coady kept things ticking over in the middle and Ince was a constant danger. Everyone played well in fairness, but I'll go for Ince I think, just edging out Wisdom.


The lads play again this Thursday when they entertain Leeds at the Academy. All being well, I'll have a report from that game too.



Team: Oldfield; Flanagan, Wisdom, Sama, Robinson (Ihiekwe); Coady, Roddan; Silva (Sterling), Adorjan, Ince; Ngoo (Emilsson):

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Cheers Dave. Quality match report as usual. Well Appreciated. Regarding Tony Silva Dave. Big strong quick lad he does'nt look 16 but has great potential in my opinion. Granted i have'nt seen him live like yourself and he has a long long way to go but how quick and skillful is he. He's a Portugese winger so is there any similarity with Ronaldo,Simao, Nani etc

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Yeah, I think Sterling and Silva have helped too, they're both capable of making an impact and they've added a bit of balance to the team as we've been without a right-winger for most of the season.

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Just a bit lacking up front I think. Ngoo goes from the sublime to the ridiculous, still not sure what to make of him. He's not a prolific goalscorer though, and neither is Adorjan.


Next year this group should do very well, as it's a young side and Sterling and Silva could be tremendous next season. Silva isn't really similar to any of the players Mitch mentioned, but he's got something about him.


Don't know what has happened with Karl Clair, or Adam Pepper for that matter. Looks like they've been frozen out but I haven't been able to find out why yet. I'm still asking around though, and will find out eventually I'm sure.

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