KIRKBY, ENGLAND - Saturday, November 6, 2021: Liverpool's Oakley Cannonier shoots during the U18 Premier League match between Liverpool FC Under-18's and Middlesbrough FC Under-23's at the Liverpool Academy. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool U18s triumph in 8-goal clash as Oakley Cannonier nets double

The Liverpool under-18s warmed up for their FA Youth Cup clash against Chelsea with a high-scoring win over Middlesbrough, as Oakley Cannonier scored another brace.

Middlesbrough U18s 2-6 Liverpool U18s

U18 Premier League, Rockliffe Park
January 22, 2022

Goals: Finch 2′, Simpson 53′; Jonas 9′, Myers OG 13′, Cannonier 22′ 40′, Chambers pen 56′, Davidson 89′

After a 4-1 thrashing of Burnley in midweek, in which Mateusz Musialowski starred, the U18s were back in league action on Saturday with a more familiar side restored.

Marc Bridge-Wilkinson made three changes from that cup win, with Lee Jonas and Harvey Blair both making their first starts back from injury – the centre-back having missed the last four-and-a-half months.

Liverpool were dealt an early blow at Rockliffe Park as Sonny Finch put Middlesbrough 1-0 up in only the second minute, but it was Jonas who equalised minutes later.

An own goal from Alfie Myers was then followed by two from Cannonier, as the young Reds took a 4-1 lead heading into half-time.

Middlesbrough grabbed one back after the break through Nathan Simpson, only for Luke Chambers to convert from the spot and substitute Josh Davidson to add the gloss to a 6-2 victory late on.

KIRKBY, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 15, 2022: Liverpool's Bobby Clarke during the Under-18 Premier League match between Liverpool FC Under-18's and Manchester City FC Under-18's at the Liverpool Academy. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It was a hugely impressive win for Liverpool in a fixture that ended in a 4-3 loss at Kirkby earlier in the campaign, with this the fourth time Bridge-Wilkinson’s side have netted five or more goals in a game this season.

For Cannonier, a first-half double took his season’s goal tally to 23, including 17 in 13 outings in the league – Saturday brought his fourth brace in that run, having also scored a hat-trick against Man United back in August.

The focus now turns back to the FA Youth Cup, with the visit of Chelsea to come on Saturday evening, a place in the quarter-finals at stake.

Liverpool U18s: Davies; Mabaya, Miles, Jonas (Pilling 63′), Chambers; Bajcetic, Frauendorf (Figueroa 90′), McConnell; Blair (Davidson 63′), Clark, Cannonier

Subs not used: Hewitson, Lucky

Next match: Chelsea (H) – FA Youth Cup – Saturday, January 29, 5.30pm (GMT)