It was a productive weekend for Liverpool’s loanees, as Rhian Brewster scored again and the goalkeepers were in much-improved form.
The good form produced since the turn of the year continued as the loaned Reds enjoyed a rewarding spell of action.
There was a pleasing upturn in game time too, as 10 of Jurgen Klopp’s borrowed men were handed the opportunities wanted.
Here’s all the action from across a rewarding weekend, starting with the goalscorer.
Brewster bagged his second for the Swans…
Big things are expected of Brewster at Swansea during this second half of the season, and he has taken little time to find his groove.
The 19-year-old netted his second goal in four appearances to earn the Swans a useful point with a 1-1 draw at playoff-hunting rivals Preston on Saturday.
With Swansea having fallen behind on 28 minutes, Brewster hit back just five minutes later to bring his side level with a real poacher’s finish.
After initially almost breaking down a flowing attacking move, Brewster displayed his raw striking instincts as he sensed opportunity, raced into the box and bundled the ball home.
Most pleasingly, the goal was once again reward for another impressive overall showing in which the loanee was a constant threat, competed well physically and worked hard throughout.
He was perhaps over-enthusiastic at times, though, and can consider himself fortunate not to have been sent off for a lunge which, slightly surprisingly, only earned him a booking.
It shows Brewster has the fearless mentality needed to excel, alongside the technical ability, and there’s no doubt he will shine throughout his time at the Liberty Stadium.
Improvements & injury in the goalkeeping union…
It hasn’t been an easy period for Liverpool’s three loaned goalkeeper’s, but things took a positive step forward over the weekend.
Academy shot-stopper Dan Atherton enjoyed a special moment in his embryonic career as he kept a first clean sheet at senior level to inspire Marine to a 1-0 win over Ossett United.
The winning form extended to Turkey, where Loris Karius enjoyed his first victory of 2020, as Besiktas ended a miserable run of four straight losses with a hard-fought 2-1 win at Rizespor.
The German produced a mixed performance overall, but the confidence boost from this overdue win can hopefully help Karius and his team-mates rediscover their best form.
Unfortunately, Grabara was denied the chance to build on his own upturn in form after suffering a horrible injury in Huddersfield’s 2-1 win at Hull in midweek.
Grabara clashed with team-mate Christopher Schindler and took a nasty whack to the head, forcing him to leave the field on a stretcher in a neck brace before immediately being taken to hospital.
Understandably, this will result in Grabara having a lengthy layoff as he takes time to fully recover, with the 21-year-old set to be sidelined until the end of the month at least.
Best wishes for a full recovery, Kamil.
A mixed bag for the remaining seven Reds…
Nat Phillips enjoyed a fine start to the new year as Stuttgart returned to competitive action in 2.Bundesliga this week.
The centre-back completed back-to-back full games and did a fine job as Stuttgart made a solid restart with a 3-0 win over Heidenheim and 1-1 draw at St Pauli.
Also in Germany, Marko Grujic‘s solid if unspectacular start to 2020 continued with an hour-long outing in Hertha Berlin’s 0-0 draw with Schalke on Friday, in which he had a quiet night operating as a No. 10.
On the same evening, Ovie Ejaria was in good form as he completed his 20th full game of the season in Reading‘s 1-1 draw against Cardiff in the Championship.
In the same division, Herbie Kane featured twice for Hull, but his wait for a first goal or assist at Championship level goes on.
The box-to-box midfielder enjoyed a fifth start in the 2-1 loss to Grabara’s Huddersfield, before featuring as a sub as the Tigers were demolished 5-1 by Brentford.
It was a more positive week for Sheyi Ojo, who featured twice for Rangers, including a first 90 minutes since October in the Gers’ 2-0 win at Ross County in midweek.
That was followed by an extended cameo as Rangers pushed for a winner against Aberdeen, but Ojo couldn’t find the moment of inspiration in a 0-0 draw as Steven Gerrard’s side lost more ground in the title chase.
Finally, Rhys Williams made a perfect comeback to the Kidderminster Harriers’ XI after his three-match ban, producing a rock-solid defensive display to help his side to a 2-0 win at King’s Lynn.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Weekend
- Marko Grujic (Hertha Berlin) – 63 mins vs. Schalke 04
- Ovie Ejaria (Reading) – 90 mins vs. Cardiff
- Herbie Kane (Hull) – 25 mins vs. Brentford
- Rhian Brewster (Swansea) – 88 mins vs. Preston, goal
- Harry Wilson (Bournemouth) – 90 mins vs. Aston Villa
- Sheyi Ojo (Rangers) – 25 mins vs. Aberdeen
- Loris Karius (Besiktas) – 90 mins vs. Rizespor
- Nat Phillips (Stuttgart) – 90 mins vs. St Pauli
- Rhys Williams (Kidderminster) – 90 mins vs. King’s Lynn
- Dan Atherton (Marine) – 90 mins vs. Ossett United, clean sheet