Seven of Liverpool’s 11 loanees enjoyed match action this week, with Divock Origi finding the net and Connor Randall enduring an eventful weekend.
Origi provided the big positive as the Belgian netted his second Bundesliga goal in an impressive overall performance for Wolfsburg against Bayer Leverkusen.
Starting his sixth game for Martin Schmidt’s side, Origi led the line in an eventful 2-2 draw and hit Wolfsburg’s equaliser to make it 1-1 on the stroke of half-time.
Arriving into a good position in the box, Origi towered above his marker to meet a great cross delivered from the right and powered home a bullet header from six yards to level the score.
The goal capped off a lively overall display from Origi, who provided a strong and pacy outlet up top in his 84-minute outing, and the points leaves Wolfsburg 14th in the Bundesliga table.
It was a case of the good, the bad and the ugly for Randall at Hearts, with the youngster having one of the most eventful outings of his career to date in a 2-1 win at Ross County.
It started in reverse order with the bad coming first in the opening 45 minutes—when Randall failed to clear his lines at the back post, scuffing his strike and allowing Ross County to make it 1-1.
The good followed next as the youngster—playing on the right wing—posted an assist to put Hearts 2-1 up on 59 minutes, when he slid a nice pass to release Jamie Walker into the box to make fire home.
But the ugly arrived just six minutes later when Randall then received the first red card of his professional career for a second yellow.
Hearts hung on with 10 men for the final 25 minutes to claim a big three points, and Randall will hope his good work on the day outweighs his error and dismissal to keep him in the team when back from a one-game suspension.
Most of the action for Liverpool’s loanees came on the continent this week, with only Allan Rodrigues missing out as an unused sub at Apollon Limassol.
In Germany, Ryan Kent followed his non-competitive start for Freiburg in a friendly in the international break by making his first competitive start in the Bundesliga on Saturday.
It was a baptism of fire for the youngster coming against Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena, and it proved every bit the challenge envisaged with Kent powerless to prevent his side suffering a 5-0 thrashing.
Kent played 66 minutes of the loss—which leaves Freiburg 16th in the table—and did so in a different role as he operated as a second striker supporting lone frontman Florian Niederlechner.
The 20-year-old produced some bright moments from his new position despite Bayern’s domination—including going close to scoring with a stinging long-range effort before being withdrawn at 3-0 down.
In the Netherlands, Pedro Chirivella restarted the Eredivisie season in positive form by helping Willem II move off the foot of the table with a 3-1 win over FC Twente on Sunday.
Chirivella played in a box-to-box role in the crucial win, which was something of a war of attrition between two struggling outfits—and he produced a combative display, making the most interceptions of any player.
And in Belgium, Taiwo Awoniyi continues to enjoy his longest run of sustained action and most productive spell in European football at Royal Excel Mouscron.
The in-form striker led the line and played 85 minutes to help earn a credible 1-1 draw at Genk, where Awoniyi was unable to register on the scoresheet but worked hard in a lone striker role.
Meanwhile in MLS, Brooks Lennon enjoyed a full game for Real Salt Lake against Colorado Rapids, but couldn’t prevent his side falling to a narrow 1-0 loss.
Lennon played from the right side of a three-man attacking midfield unit, where he posted some bright moments but was mostly on the periphery of the action for the most part.
With most of the action coming from loanees around the globe, it was indeed a quiet week for the home-based Reds.
Shamal George and Toni Gomes both did not play, unused subs at Carlisle United and Forest Green Rovers respectively, meaning Jordan Williams was the only Football League loanee in action.
The midfielder played all Rochdale’s 2-2 draw against Fleetwood and was in solid form in his usual holding midfield role.
However he will be disappointed with his part in Fleetwood’s opener as he allowed his man to get goal-side and score.
While George was left out by Carlisle manager Keith Curle for Saturday’s 1-0 loss away to Colchester United, the 19-year-old goalkeeper did train at Melwood on Thursday.
It may be bending the rules slightly but we will finish with an update on Naby Keita.
Liverpool’s record signing helped RB Leipzig to an impressive 3-2 win at Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, but Keita only played the first half of an ill-tempered contest.
The all-action midfielder was excellent in that opening 45 minutes, but was withdrawn at half-time as he was on a yellow card and looking like he might receive another, while Leipzig also have Champions League action in midweek.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Week
- Divock Origi – Wolfsburg – Played 84 mins & scored vs. Bayer Leverkusen
- Ryan Kent – Freiburg – Played 66 mins vs. Bayern Munich
- Sheyi Ojo – Fulham – N/A due to injury
- Pedro Chirivella – Willem II – Played 90 mins vs. FC Twente
- Connor Randall – Hearts – Played 65 mins, assisted & was sent off vs. Ross County
- Taiwo Awoniyi – Mouscron – Played 85 mins vs. Genk
- Allan Rodrigues – Apollon Limassol – Unused sub vs. Anorthosis
- Brooks Lennon – Real Salt Lake – Played 90 mins vs. Colorado Rapids
- Jordan Williams – Rochdale – Played 90 mins vs. Fleetwood
- Shamal George – Carlisle – Unused sub vs. Colchester
- Toni Gomes – Forest Green – Unused sub vs. Newport
- Naby Keita – RB Leipzig – Played 45 mins vs. Borussia Dortmund
Sheyi Ojo was out of action at Fulham, with the youngster sidelined for around the next three months due to a dislocated shoulder.