We take a look at how the 16 loaned members of the Liverpool squad performed for their temporary club throughout the festive period.
Sergi Canos was the big positive this week, with the youngster continuing his good run of form in both of Brentford’s festive games.
On Boxing day, he started and played 76 minutes of the Bees 1-1 draw with promotion chasers, Brighton, producing a lively performance on the right of the three man attack.
He almost fired his side ahead early on, only to see his well struck effort flash just over the bar, as he couldn’t quite make the telling difference before being withdrawn with 15 minutes to go.
Two days later, Canos continued his impressive recent form, netting an outstanding winner 13 minutes after coming on to make a match-winning impact and give the Bees an impressive 2-1 win over Reading.
The Spaniard delighted with his instant injection, finding the net with an absolutely superb solo effort, controlling a long pass beautifully and beating two men as he cut inside on his left foot, before firing into the far corner from just inside the box.
— Sergi Canós Tenés (@sergicanos) December 28, 2015
In Turkey, Lazar Markovic continued his positive return from injury, starting and playing 90 minutes in Fenerbache’s 2-1 win over Sivasspor on Monday night.
The Serbian – deployed in his familiar right side position in Fener’s front three – impressed with a lively performance, and though he didn’t register a direct contribution, showed some real positive play in flashes with his pace and dribbling causing the away side a constant problem.
LAZAR MARKOVIC – SON OF WIND! https://t.co/R3bLHXhigO
— Fener Int (@fenerint) December 28, 2015
Back in the Championship, Sheyi Ojo was once again frustrated in his search for match action at Wolves, with the youngster again left out of matchday involvement for their 1-0 Boxing Day success over Reading.
After six games out of involvement, the youngster made a welcome return to the squad for the trip to Charlton on Bank Holiday Monday, but he played only the final two minutes and added time, introduced to run the clock down with his side seeing out a 2-0 lead.
Also in the division, academy product Will Marsh was left out of both Sheffield Wednesday’s Christmas matches, with his only action coming for the club’s U21 side against Leeds United.
Danny Ward’s run of consecutive clean sheets came to end on Boxing Day as the ‘keeper conceded twice in a 2-2 draw with Inverness Caledonian Thistle.
The Welsh stopper could do nothing about either goal conceded and enjoyed a largely quiet afternoon – goals aside – but he still made some important saves when needed, including an important block as Inverness burst through on goal in the first half.
It wasn’t the Boxing Day of festive cheer hoped for Lawrence Vigouroux, with the ‘keeper playing 90 minutes in Swindon’s 3-1 home loss to promotion chasing Gillingham.
The Chilean ‘keeper has been in great form recently, but he endured a mixed performance in which he could have done better with one or two of the Gills goals, but did save a late penalty – diving superbly down to his right – to keep the score-line slightly more respectable.
Vigouroux rounded off the Christmas fixtures with a second defeat in three days but with a positive performance in a narrow 1-0 loss against league leaders, Burton.
Top save from Vigouroux one-on-one very early on here. Stood up brilliantly #STFC
— Swindon Town FC (@Official_STFC) December 28, 2015
On a testing afternoon the Reds stopper impressed hugely making a couple of excellent saves, but he couldn’t keep out the match-winning penalty 13 minutes from time as his side suffered back-to-back losses.
Also in League One, Coventry loanee Ryan Kent endured a frustrating Boxing Day, playing only the final seven minutes of the Sky Blues’ 1-0 win over Port Vale.
The youngster entered on the left of the City attack with his side already leading, and he had little time to make an impact, doing little more than helping his side see out victory.
More positively, Kent returned to the starting XI for the Sky Blues’ trip to Chesterfield, playing 65 minutes on the right of Coventry’s attack in the 1-1 draw.
He endured a quieter afternoon, though showed his ability in flashes before he was withdrawn by boss Tony Mowbray with his side trailing 1-0.
Unsurprisingly with boss Remi Garde feeling the Portuguese defender lacks fitness levels to be considered for action, Tiago Ilori was left out of matchday involvement for both of Aston Villa’s festive fixtures against West Ham and Norwich.
Meanwhile, European loaness Luis Alberto, Samed Yesil, and Taiwo Awoniyi all did not play this week, with due to the winter break’s enjoyed in their respective countries.
Liverpool’s loaned players this week
- Markovic – Fenerbache – Played 90mins vs. Sivasspor
- Ilori – Aston Villa – Left out of matchday squad
- Canos – Brentford – Played 76 mins vs. Brighton & scored in 34 mins vs. Reading
- Ojo – Wolves – Left out of matchday squad vs. Reading & played 2mins vs. Charlton
- Ward – Aberdeen – Played 90mins vs. Inverness
- Kent – Coventry – Played 7mins vs. Port Vale & 65mins vs. Chesterfield
- Vigouroux – Swindon – Played 90mins vs. Gillingham & Burton
- Marsh – Sheffield Wednesday – Played vs. Leeds U21
Positively, Mario Balotelli has returned to training with AC Milan and could feature when Serie A recommences after the winter break.
MID-SEASON LOAN REPORTS: