It was a quiet week of action for Liverpool’s loaned men, with a number of Reds frustrated in their search for game time and others enduring disappointing outings for their temporary clubs.
In a seven days of little productivity from the 12 loanees, Lloyd Jones presented one positive this week with League One Swindon Town.
After notching his first goal for the club against Bristol Rovers on Tuesday, the young centre-back built on his improved form – after a wake-up call with a sending off the weekend before – by helping the Robins to a clean sheet and 2-0 win over Oldham.
Deployed as part of a back three again, Jones turned in a strong defensive performance playing his role in restricting the home side to very little goal-scoring opportunity, and he nearly capped off an impressive display with a second goal in as many games – seeing a composed strike hacked off the line when it seemed destined for the net.
It was a weekend of tough luck and disappointing results for Liverpool’s loaned goalkeepers in the Championship.
Danny Ward suffered a narrow defeat with Huddersfield who went down 1-0 at Reading – a result that saw the Terriers surrender top spot in the table.
The young ‘keeper made some decent saves at the Madejski Stadium where his side went down to 10-men mid-way through the first-half, but Ward will be frustrated to have been beaten by a deflected effort that deviated away from the diving Welshman before then hitting him on the way in.
Fortunes were no better for Adam Bogdan at bottom club, Wigan, with the Hungarian also beaten by a dreadful deflection that condemned his side to a same score-line loss at Preston on Friday night.
Bogdan produced a decent overall display that should have been enough to earn a clean sheet, but a scruffy shot took a horrible deflection, wrong-footing the Hungary international and leaving him helpless as the ball crept into the corner of his net.
Also in the second tier, Ryan Kent completed a disappointed weekend of results for the Championship men, with the young winger unable to prevent his Barnsley side slipping to a 2-0 loss at Brighton.
Kent started on the bench at the Amex Stadium and was thrown in to rescue a difficult situation with his side 2-0 down and staring defeat in the face with 25 minutes left on the clock.
But though he couldn’t come up with the game-changing influence, he still produced a bright cameo performance in his right midfield role – creating one decent opening with some good wing play and a dangerous cross that almost saw his side pull one back.
68 – Ryan Kent beats his man on the wing and puts in a fantastic low cross, Winnall is inches away from a tap-in. #COYR
— Barnsley FC (@BarnsleyFC) September 24, 2016
On the continent, Lazar Markovic was once again restricted to a substitute appearance as he finds his feet at Sporting Lisbon, who beat Estoril 4-2 on Friday night.
The Serbian replaced striker Bas Dost after 73 minutes with Sporting 3-0 up, and with the game already won, he naturally had little chance to make a crucial difference – though he did create a clear-cut chance for team-mate, Andre, cutting back well under pressure after a surging run in the box.
Markovic will hope he has done enough in his sub outings to earn a starting XI place when Sporting take on Legia Warsaw in the Champions League on Tuesday.
In the Netherlands, Taiwo Awoniyi’s slow start to the season with NEC Nijmegen saw the Nigerian striker drop to the bench in midweek for the cup clash with ADO Den Haag.
The powerful front man did feature as a substitute however – playing the final 13 minutes and the full half-hour of extra-time in the cup draw – and he made a positive impact, winning a penalty after being brought down following a powerful surge into the box.
The game was eventually won on spot-kick’s by Nijmegen, and following his positive cameo performance, Awoniyi returned to the starting XI for the Eredivisie clash with Willem II on Sunday.
But the teenager’s wait for his first goal at the club goes on, with the Nigeria under-23 international unable to break his duck in the goalless draw, in which he was withdrawn in stoppage time after a quiet overall performance boasting little goal-threat.
Back in the Football League, Ryan Fulton completed a hat-trick of defeats for the loaned ‘keeper’s as his Chesterfield team lost 2-1 at high-flying Bury.
Like Ward and Bogdan, Fulton was powerless to prevent either goal conceded, beaten by two sharp finishes from the home side rather than a cruel deflection however.
Also in League One, Sam Hart was again uninvolved for Port Vale, watching his side’s 2-1 loss to Bristol Rovers from the bench for the duration.
Jack Dunn endured a quiet outing for League Two Morecambe, despite featuring in an eventful 3-2 defeat to Crawley on Saturday.
With five goals to his name this season, Dunn led the Shrimps’ attack at the Globe Arena, but with his team 1-0 behind, he made way after 78 minutes as manager Jim Bentley searched for a way back into the game which he found but ultimately too late.
In the Bundesliga, after making his Hertha Berlin debut against Bayern Munich in midweek, Allan Rodriguez de Souza was denied the chance to build on that maiden start with the Brazilian an unused substitute in a chaotic 3-3 draw with Eintracht Frankfurt.
And finally, after being frustrated in his search for first-team action, Jon Flanagan will hope to feature for Burnley as they take on Watford on Monday night – a game which can be seen on Sky Sports One.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Week
- Markovic – Sporting – Played 20mins vs. Estoril
- Flanagan – Burnley – Monday night fixture vs. Watford to come
- Ward – Huddersfield – Played 90mins vs. Reading
- Bogdan – Wigan – Played 90mins vs. Preston
- Kent – Barnsley – Played 26mins vs. Brighton
- Fulton – Chesterfield – Played 90mins vs. Bury
- Jones – Swindon – Played 90mins, keeping clean sheet vs. Oldham
- Hart – Port Vale – Unused sub vs. Bristol Rovers
- Dunn – Morecambe – Played 78mins vs. Crawley
- Awoniyi – NEC Nijmegen – Played 43mins vs. Den Haag & 92mins vs. Willem II
- Allan – Hertha Berlin – Played 90mins vs. Bayern Munich & Unused sub vs. Frankfurt
Andre Wisdom was missing for the second game running at Red Bull Salzburg due to the thigh tear sustained in the Europa League, which is expected to keep him out for around three weeks.