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Harry Wilson hoping Anfield can fire up Liverpool’s young players

12 December 2016

Liverpool Under-23s captain Harry Wilson expects Anfield to provide the inspiration as they host Premier League 2 rivals Arsenal in a showpiece fixture.

The reserves rarely get chance to play at the stadium, having to make do with Tranmere’s Prenton Park or the club’s Kirkby academy, and are making their first appearance since the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City in February.

Having seen a number of the under-23 side make their senior debuts under Jurgen Klopp on this ground Wilson, Wales’ youngest player when he featured for Chris Coleman’s side in 2013 aged 16 and 207 days, hopes to soon be following in their footsteps.

But for now Monday evening’s clash against the Gunners, which pitches third against fourth, will do for starters.

“My last game of last season was at Anfield against Man City as I’d broken my toe the week before but I managed to play with an injection,” he said.

“That was when the disappointment started for me but I’m trying to forget that game because we lost 3-0.

“We don’t get to play there very often so I think when we do we just want to enjoy ourselves and that is where we want to get with the first team.

“We have to work hard like we always do and enjoy the occasion because I don’t think many people get the chance to play there.

“It is definitely inspirational because we’ve all been to the Premier League and European games there so we all know what a special place it is and the history that comes with it.

“When we play there, even though the crowds are nowhere big as the first team, it is still inspiring for us because we play on the same pitch, the same stadium.”

The match will be their first without coach Michael Beale, who left the club earlier this week to join Sao Paulo as assistant manager but Wilson, now 19, insists that has not affected preparation.

“It is quite seamless really,” he added. “We all know Mick Garrity, who’s taking the game against Arsenal, as he’s been Michael’s assistant for a few years so knows how he worked so I don’t think the transition will be difficult at all.”

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