HIGH WYCOMBE, ENGLAND - Monday, March 6, 2017: Liverpool's Marko Grujic in action against Reading during FA Premier League 2 Division 1 Under-23 match at Adams Park Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Gomez & Grujic feature as LFC U23s reach PL Cup quarter-finals in dramatic penalty shootout win

Liverpool U23s came through a tense Premier League Cup clash with Hull City on Sunday afternoon, with Mike Garrity’s side edging out the Tigers on penalties after a 2-2 draw.

Garrity fielded a strong starting line-up at Bishop Burton, with Joe Gomez, Marko Grujic and Sheyi Ojo all involved, as they looked to reach the last-eight.

The likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ben Woodburn and Harry Wilson were all unavailable, however, having travelled with the first-team squad to Man City.

Ben Hinchcliffe’s first-half strike from a rebound ensured Hull took a 1-0 lead into the break, but Liverpool responded thanks to Matty Virtue’s close-range equaliser.

Despite the best efforts of both sides, neither could find a winner in normal time, with extra-time needed to separate them.

Toni Gomes’ expert finish from Ojo’s cross looked to have sealed a quarter-final berth for the Reds youngsters, only for Luke Lofts to coolly make it 2-2.

The agony of a penalty shootout was left to decide who would progress, and fortunately, it was Liverpool who held their nerve.

Kevin Stewart, Gomez, Madger Gomes, Nathaniel Phillips and Gomes all converted their spot-kicks, although Ojo fired his effort over the crossbar.

KIRKBY, ENGLAND - Wednesday, November 23, 2016: Liverpool's Joe Gomez in action against Burnley during the Lancashire Senior Cup 2nd Round match at the Academy. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It didn’t matter, though, as Will Annan and Brad Maslen-Jones missed for the hosts, confirming Liverpool’s place in the quarters.

Some of Hull’s players were full of praise for their opponents post-match:


Speaking after the game, Garrity spoke of his pleasure at the result, as well as the importance of more game time for Gomez and Grujic.

“We are pleased to qualify for the next stage of the competition because this was a tough game,” Garrity told Liverpoolfc.com.

Hull City worked hard and made it tough for us at times but the lads battled well.

“It was good to see Joe [Gomez] last the full distance and Marko [Grujic] get more minutes and both lads are getting stronger.”

Liverpool: Kelleher; Whelan, Phillips, Gomez, Randall; Stewart, Virtue, Grujic (Alves 106′) Ojo, Dhanda (M. Gomes 67′), T. Gomes

Subs not used: Williams, Brewitt, Juanma

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