Liverpool brought 13 academy players as part of their squad for this month’s training camp in Dubai, but two others may have missed out due to injury.
The Reds are underway in Dubai, with a strong group of senior players joined by youngsters called up from the academy.
It gives those youth players an opportunity to impress during warm-weather training and the two upcoming friendlies against Lyon and AC Milan.
But for two others, the trip came too early, with Isaac Mabaya and Oakley Cannonier both likely to have been invited to Dubai were it not for untimely injuries.
Mabaya has been sidelined since the Liverpool under-19s’ 4-1 victory over Rangers in the UEFA Youth League on October 4, having been brought off in that tie with an ankle problem.
Given his involvement throughout pre-season, and the absence of Trent Alexander-Arnold due to the World Cup, it is highly likely that, if fit, the 18-year-old right-back would have travelled to Dubai.
So, too, could have prolific striker Cannonier, who has not featured since the 4-3 win over Rangers in the same competition on October 12.
Also 18, Cannonier has struck nine times in 11 games for the academy so far this season, with his seven in four appearances making him the leading goalscorer in the UEFA Youth League.
But persistent injuries have stymied his momentum, and perhaps even a first-team debut in the Carabao Cup third-round clash with Derby last month.
Stewart, 20, was called in to start in an eventual penalty shootout win, but elite development coach Vitor Matos would almost certainly have recommended Cannonier too were he fit.
Both Mabaya and Cannonier are expected to amp up their recovery in the coming weeks – the striker due back earliest, with a comeback pencilled in post-Christmas.
Missing the Dubai camp could be seen as an opportunity lost for the pair, but they still have time on their side at 18, and can look to continue to make their mark between now and next pre-season.