All 3 group games have been played in the group involving Liverpool players and 4 out of 5 will be heading back home.
England were already out before the defeat to Israel… yes, Israel, and Italy were already through prior to their draw against Norway. Ofir Kriaf’s strike from outside the box meant England crashed out without a single point. Whilst Italy needed a 94th minute equaliser to grab a draw against Norway who had taken the lead with a 90th minute penalty. But how did the Liverpool players get on?
Andre Wisdom captained England and Jonjo Shelvey started in an advanced midfield role. Jack Robinson was due to start but ended up having to pull out due to a pre game injury and captain Jordan Henderson dropped to the bench. Disappointingly for Fabio Borini he was on the bench, and like the Israel match, didn’t get substituted on.
Jonjo Shelvey: He started in an attacking midfield role and played off Connor Wickham like he did in the first match against Italy. He started off well and managed to find space in between the Israeli backline and midfield, he had a shot blocked early on and in the 12 minute set up a good chance for both Wickham and Ince after getting behind the Israel defence but both of them failed to connect. He misplaced a fair few passes but was on the ball more than most of the players and was acting as the main creative outlet, because of this he had to try a few risky passes that could unlock the Israeli defence.
He slipped a good ball through to Ince in the 29th minute but his shot was blocked, and not long after that Shelvey himself blazed a shot well over the bar. As usual with Shelvey he looked good in patches but not so good in others, he had 5 efforts on goal of which only 1 was on target and a few times he attempted long range shots when a pass would have been a better option.
Andre Wisdom: Andre was starting his first match of the tournament but was given the captains armband. He read the game well and made a number of timely interventions. He used his strength well when necessary and also looked very comfortable on the ball. One thing that impressed me was that when he dispossessed an Israeli player near his own goal he didn’t just smash it clear he looked to play a pass to a team mate. On a few occasions this meant England could immediately hit Israel on the counter attack. For me he was easily England’s best player and it calls into question Pearce’s judgement as he chose to start the one dimensional Dawson ahead of him in the last two matches.
Jordan Henderson: Hendo came on for Tom Ince at half time and played alongside Chalobah in midfield. This meant Josh McEachran moved to the left wing. Henderson played how he usually does for Liverpool really, nothing exactly ground breaking but he moved the ball around well and chased the Israeli players to put more pressure on them. He was involved in a few neat moves, one involved a one two with Shelvey on the edge of the box but his shot was quickly blocked. Solid but unspectacular is a good way to describe his 45 minutes.
Elsewhere today, Liverpool under 21’s midfielder Connor Coady has been named as England’s captain for the under 20 World Cup which starts on 21st June.
Let me know what you thought of how Liverpool’s players got on, I’m always interested to hear people’s opinions so leave a comment below or you can tweet me at @JLwi11iams.