Liverpool’s Under-21s suffered defeat to Southampton at Anfield on Thursday night, their first match since September.
Liverpool Under-21s 1-3 Southampton Under-21s
Report from Anfield
The wet conditions early on tested both sides, with each creating several half chances and Liverpool keeper Danny Ward making a smart save from close range.
Southampton took the lead through Ryan Seagers on 24 minutes, the Saints’ forward placing his shot past Ward at the Kop end.
Liverpool made an immediate reply though, equalising within a minute as Jerome Sinclair’s cross from the right was side footed into his own net by right-back Nial Mason as he attempted to put it out for a corner.
It was an entertaining first half between two similar sides, both looking to play a possession game and squeeze their opponents by playing a high defensive line.
Jordan Rossiter replaced Ryan McLaughlin at half-time, the Northern Irishman perhaps looking tired from being on international duty recently. McLaughlin played on the left of the front three in the first 45 but Rossiter slotted into midfield as LFC changed to a diamond shape.
It was Southampton who retook the lead shortly after the break, the visitor’s left winger, Omar Rowe, jinxed past right-back Connor Randall for too easily and played a low cross which was finished well by Seagers from close range for his second of the night.
The Reds introduced midfielder Dan Trickett-Smith midway through the second half, his introduction for Randall saw Kevin Stewart move over to right-back and Jordan Williams drop in alongside Lloyd Jones at centre-back.
Danny Ward made a good save to deny Seagers his hat trick as Southampton broke while Liverpool went searching for an equaliser. Rossiter and Wilson were the players most looking to make things happen for Michael Beale’s side.
The rain returned but Wilson’s frustrating night continued, with the linesman’s flag denying him a chance.
Southampton made it 3-1 in the final minute, Jake Hesketh’s shot going through Ward.
Cameron Branagan forced a save in stoppage time but it was Southampton who took the points.
TIA Man of the Match: Jordan Williams
Liverpool: (4-3-3) Ward; Randall (Trickett-Smith 64), Stewart, Jones, Maguire; Williams, Phillips (O’Hanlon 78), Brannagan; Wilson, Sinclair, McLaughlin (Rossiter 45).
Subs not used: Vigouroux, Cleary.