NORWICH, ENGLAND - Tuesday, September 21, 2021: Liverpool's Kaide Gordon during the pre-match warm-up before the Football League Cup 3rd Round match between Norwich City FC and Liverpool FC at Carrow Road. Liverpool won 3-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool hand Kaide Gordon first-team show of faith despite injuries

It has been a year of highs and lows for Kaide Gordon, and despite persistent injuries keeping him from involvement he is still part of the first-team squad.

While 2022 has been the year in which Gordon made history, netting against Shrewsbury to become the club’s youngest-ever FA Cup goalscorer and second-youngest in all competitions, it has been stop-start since.

Three of his four first-team appearances came in January, but the last time he has been involved at senior level was as an unused substitute in the 3-1 win over Cardiff on February 6.

In fact, his last outing at any level came the day after, in a 3-0 loss to Leeds under-23s, with the teenager then sitting out of the rest of the campaign.

It was claimed in March that Gordon had suffered a “little injury” and it was “nothing serious,” but those minor issues have stacked up in the ensuing months.

Gordon returned to the AXA Training Centre at the beginning of June, following a brief holiday, and over a month later he is still undergoing rehabilitation, unable to travel for the pre-season tour of Asia.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 23, 2022: Liverpool's Kaide Gordon during the pre-match warm-up before the FA Premier League match between Crystal Palace FC and Liverpool FC at Selhurst Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

But while the 17-year-old was left out of the squad to play Man United and Crystal Palace, he has been continuing his recovery within the first-team setup.

The winger was among those working in the gym on Monday, while another 15-man group training outside, trading handshakes with Mohamed Salah and Virgil van Dijk ahead of their fitness tests.

It stands to reason that he would remain involved despite not being able to feature, with Gordon receiving treatment alongside Caoimhin Kelleher and Calvin Ramsay.

Liverpool’s injury list is vast in these early weeks of pre-season, with Alisson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Diogo Jota also sidelined.

Joe Gomez has now recovered from a small problem, while Tom Hill and Melkamu Frauendorf are not expected to be out for the long term.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, November 3, 2021: Liverpool's Kaide Gordon during the UEFA Youth League Group B Matchday 4 game between Liverpool FC Under19's and Club Atlético de Madrid Under-19's at the Liverpool Academy. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

But working with those high-profile names as he edges closer to fitness will be a boost for Gordon in itself, with the gesture of remaining with the first team rather than the under-21s a symbolic one.

In May, it was revealed that Liverpool had reached a deal with the cash-strapped Derby to buy out one of the clauses in their deal for Gordon, paying £500,000 to remove a 20 percent sell-on obligation.

Whether the youngster will be available before the end of pre-season remains to be seen, though there is a chance he travels with the squad to Germany and Austria.