Liverpool U21s 1-1 Arsenal U21s
Premier League 2, AXA Training Centre
October 1, 2022
Goals: Blair 71′; Ideho 42′
In his pre-match press conference on Friday, Jurgen Klopp revealed that Kelleher was set to feature for Barry Lewtas‘ side this weekend, having recently recovered from a groin injury that kept him out for the entire pre-season and the early weeks of Liverpool’s 2022/23 campaign.
With a number of senior players returning to fitness, Stefan Bajcetic was also given a game, with Luca Stephenson and Harvey Blair making their first U21s starts of the season.
The Reds had opportunities to open the scoring early on, with Melkamu Frauendorf going close and Bobby Clark having a strong penalty appeal turned down.
But it was Arsenal who went into the break in front. Joel Ideho was on hand to finish from close range as Liverpool were unable to clear from a corner.
The Gunners may have extended their lead before half-time had Kelleher not denied Amario Cozier-Duberry.
HT: Liverpool U21s 0-1 Arsenal U21s
The equaliser came 20 minutes from full-time.
It was captain Layton Stewart who created the opening, turning his man before setting up Blair, who fired his effort into the bottom corner.
Minutes later, midfielder Mateusz Musialowski was introduced from the bench after an unexplained period on the sidelines, with doubts remaining over his long-term future at the club.
And the Polish youngster handed Liverpool an opportunity to win it after he was hauled down inside the box to earn his side a penalty in the 79th minute.
It was the in-form Luke Chambers who stepped up, only for his spot-kick to be saved by goalkeeper Hubert Graczyk, who also denied Frauendorf and Musialowski with other efforts late on.
The scores remained level, with Kelleher and Bajcetic completing the full 90 minutes. There could be more senior players involved with the U21s in the coming weeks, with Klopp suggesting Calvin Ramsay could soon get a runout with Lewtas’ side as he builds up fitness following injury.
Liverpool U21s: Kelleher; Mabaya, Jonas, Chambers, Norris; Bajcetic, Stephenson, Clark (Corness 62′); Blair (Musialowski 74′), Frauendorf, Stewart
Subs not used: Kelly, Corness, Spearing, Cannonier