Ings & Ejaria score, Karius & Grujic endure mixed full debuts – Liverpool FC Loan Watch

It was a week of highs and lows for Liverpool’s loanees, as Danny Ings and Ovie Ejaria scored but Loris Karius and Marko Grujic struggled on full debuts.

There was good and not so good among the borrowed Reds’ performances, in what was another productive week of action overall.

In total, 10 of 16 loanees played, with Harry Wilson still injured and Ben Woodburn, Shamal George, Allan Rodrigues and Anderson Arroyo all going without game-time.

Here’s the full lowdown on all the action starting with the goalscorers.


Two Reds hit the back of the net…

It’s fair to say Ings has taken no time to rediscover his goal-scoring touch since joining Southampton.

The striker netted his second goal in just 271 minutes of action for his boyhood club, and a crucial strike it was helping the Saints to a much-needed 2-0 win at Crystal Palace.

Ings opened the scoring just after half-time with a clinical finish, cleverly poking under Wayne Hennessey after latching onto a long pass.

It’s been a great start to life at St Mary’s for Ings, who will hope to build on his fast start with a strong goalscoring streak.

Ings was joined on the score-sheet by Ejaria who struck what was his second goal in as many games—and one of the most crucial he will ever score—for Steven Gerrard’s Rangers.

Rangers Oviemuno Ejaria during the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round, first leg match at Ibrox, Glasgow. (Jeff Holmes/PA Archive/PA Images)

Ejaria made himself an Ibrox hero with a wonder goal to take Rangers into the Europa League group stage, after the nine-man Gers hung on for a priceless 1-1 draw and 2-1 aggregate win at FC Ufa.

Ejaria’s tie-clinching effort came on nine minutes when he pounced on a loose ball, opened his body and unleashed a stunning curler into the far corner.

Ejaria’s growing influence saw him handed a start for the first Old Firm clash of the season with Celtic on Sunday, but he couldn’t replicate his midweek heroics in a 1-0 loss.

Despite the derby defeat, Ejaria’s recent form has been hugely encouraging and he looks set to become a key player at Ibrox this season.


There were instant debuts for two European based Reds…

BIRKENHEAD, ENGLAND - Tuesday, July 10, 2018: Liverpool's Sheyi Ojo celebrates scoring the second goal during a preseason friendly match between Tranmere Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Prenton Park. (Pic by Paul Greenwood/Propaganda)

Sheyi Ojo only joined Stade de Reims on Thursday but he was straight into action, making his bow little more than 48 hours after his move was confirmed.

Ojo featured as a second-half sub in a 1-0 loss to Montpellier, playing the final 12 minutes as Reims searched for a route back.

Ojo couldn’t deliver the goods, understandably with time against him, but he will be pleased to have got straight down to business as he looks to make his mark in Ligue 1.

It was a similar story for Karius, who was thrown straight in for Besiktas’ fourth game of the Super Lig season against Bursaspor, which ended 1-1.

BLACKBURN, ENGLAND - Thursday, July 19, 2018: Liverpool's goalkeeper Loris Karius during a preseason friendly match between Blackburn Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Ewood Park. (Pic by Paul Greenwood/Propaganda)

The German had big pressure on his shoulders coming in as the new No.1 and he showed signs of feeling it as he produced a mixed first outing.

Karius made a fine start with a superb first-half, one-on-one save to keep his side ahead, but just as it seemed it would be a perfect debut with a clean sheet, he made a bad error to gift Bursaspor a late equaliser.

With four minutes left, Karius produced a poor piece of judgement, misreading a cut-back which left him stranded in no man’s land and saw him beaten at his near post as he left the goal gaping.

It wasn’t a great start for Karius at Besiktas, but he has to take the positives forward to ensure things only improve from here.


Six more Reds enjoyed game-time…

Staying in Europe and Karius wasn’t the only man to have a first start of mixed fortunes, with Grujic producing similar in Hertha Berlin’s clash with Schalke 04.

The Serbian, featuring as part of a midfield three, showed positives with his physicality but frustrated in equal measure, as he conceded a penalty with a careless handball.

Luckily for Grujic, the spot-kick was missed and he still went on to enjoy a winning start as Hertha claimed a 2-0 win to make it six points from six.

In Belgium, Taiwo Awoniyi featured once for KAA Gent, an ineffective hour-long outing as his side exited the Europa League qualifiers with a 2-0 loss at Bordeaux.

Awoniyi was then surprisingly left out of matchday involvement against Cercle Brugge despite taking part in the warm-up, with his poor midweek showing seemingly the reason why.

Two Reds were in action in the Football League.

Connor Randall made his Rochdale debut against Middlesbrough in the League Cup, but it didn’t go as he will have hoped as injury forced him off after 57 minutes of the 2-1 loss.

And that knock meant there was only one outing for Randall, with the full-back ruled out against Coventry on Saturday.

BIRKENHEAD, ENGLAND - Saturday, November 18, 2017: Liverpool's Herbie Kane during the Under-23 FA Premier League 2 Division 1 match between Liverpool and Everton at Prenton Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Herbie Kane was rested for League Cup action in midweek, but returned for league duties, playing all 90 minutes of Doncaster’s 1-1 draw at Peterborough—his fifth full game since joining.

In Scotland, Ryan Kent enjoyed two full run-outs alongside Ejaria at Rangers after a spell of intermittent action.

Kent played his part in the Gers’ heroic efforts at FC Ufa and also tasted his first Old Firm derby experience in the 1-0 loss to Celtic, turning in two hard-working performances.

Finally, Adam Bogdan was in goal as Hibernian lost 2-1 to Livingston on Saturday, with the ‘keeper not at fault for either goal while also making some good saves to keep the score respectable.

Liverpool’s Loanees This Week

Gent's Taiwo Awoniyi celebrates after scoring during a soccer game between Belgian club KAA Gent and Polish team Jagiellonia Bialystok, Thursday 16 August 2018 in Gent, the return leg of the third qualification round for the Europa League competition. BELGA PHOTO BRUNO FAHY

  • Loris Karius – Played 90 mins vs. Bursaspor
  • Marko Grujic – Played 90 mins vs. Schalke
  • Danny Ings – Rested vs. Brighton & played 78 mins, scoring once, vs. Crystal Palace
  • Sheyi Ojo – Played 12 mins vs. Montpellier
  • Ovie Ejaria – Played 90 mins & scored vs. FC Ufa & 90 mins vs. Celtic
  • Ryan Kent – Played 90 mins vs. FC Ufa & 87 mins vs. Celtic
  • Adam Bogdan – Played 90 mins vs. Livingston
  • Taiwo Awoniyi – Played 63 mins vs. Bordeaux & left out vs. Cercle Brugge
  • Connor Randall – Played 57 mins vs. Middlesbrough
  • Herbie Kane – Rested vs. Blackpool & played 90 mins vs. Peterborough
  • Ben Woodburn – Unused sub vs. Aston Villa
  • Shamal George – Unused sub vs. Northampton
  • Anderson Arroyo – Left out of matchday squad vs. Bordeaux & Cercle Brugge
  • Allan Rodrigues – Left out of matchday squad vs. Werder Bremen
  • Harry Wilson – Injured
  • Corey Whelan – N/A

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