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Liverpool F.C. Reserves and Academy

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Subject: Lancashire Combination, Jerome Sinclair, Suso (footballer), Martin Kelly, Daniel Pacheco
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Liverpool F.C. Reserves and Academy

Liverpool Reserves
Full name Liverpool Football Club Reserves
Nickname(s) The Young Reds
Founded 1892
Ground Anfield, Liverpool
Langtree Park, St Helens
Deva Stadium, Chester (all U21s)[1]
The Academy, Kirkby (U18s)
Manager Michael Beale (U21s)
Neil Critchley (U18s)
League Professional Development League 1
2013–14 Professional Development League 1 Group 3
Website Club home page

Liverpool F.C. Reserves is the reserve team of Liverpool. It is the most senior level of the Liverpool academy beneath the first team. In the summer of 2012, the whole English reserve football system was overhauled and replaced with an Under 21 league system, the Professional Development League. Liverpool's Reserve team became the Liverpool under 21 team and competes in the Professional Development League 1 which is also known by its sponsorship name of Barclays under 21 Premier League. The team generally consists of Under-21 players at the club but at times senior players also play for the reserves when they are recuperating from injury. Following the introduction of new regulations from 2012-13 season, only three outfield players and one goalkeeper over the age of 21 can play for the reserves regularly. The current reserve team is coached by Michael Beale.

In 2012–13 Professional U21 Development League the reserve team of Liverpool reached the semifinal before losing to the eventual winners Manchester United. The following season in 2013-14 the reserves team again lost to Manchester United reserves in the semis.

Liverpool F.C. Academy is the youth set up Liverpool Football Club. It trains players from the U6 age group[2] up to the U21 squad. The academy has separate head coaches in charge of development in the U6-U9, U10-U11, U12-U14 and U15-U16 age groups. At U21 and U18 level there are dedicated coaching teams managed by Michael Beale and Neil Critchley respectively. Alex Inglethorpe was promoted from U21 manager to Academy Director in the summer of 2014 and hold overall responsibility for operation of the academy. The academy has won the FA Youth Cup, a competition for players of age 15 to 18, three times in 1996, 2006 and 2007.

Liverpool F.C. Academy is considered to be one of the best and one of the most prolific football academies both in England and in the world. Various current and past Liverpool players have graduated through the academy with the likes of Billy Liddell, Ronnie Moran, Ian Callaghan, Phil Thompson, Robbie Fowler, Steve McManaman, Michael Owen, Jamie Carragher, Steven Gerrard, Jon Flanagan and Raheem Sterling among many others.

Reserve team

Liverpool Reserves played in the FA Premier Reserve League. The Reserves won the regional division title in 2000 and again in 2008 winning also the national league that year. It competed in the Lancashire Combination from 1896 to 1911, with the exception of the 1898–99 season, in which it joined The Combination. From 1911 on, it took part in the Central League until becoming inaugural members of the Premier Reserve League North in 1999. It also used to participate in the Liverpool Senior Cup and the Lancashire Senior Cup; the last time it took part in them was the 2009–10 season when it also won both competitions.

The last reserve team manager was Rodolfo Borrell, who was appointed in July 2011 and led the reserve team during its final season before taking over the newly formed under-21 side in July 2012. The reserves last played their home games at Prenton Park (the home of Tranmere Rovers);[3] in previous seasons the team has also played at the club's academy, the Halliwell Jones Stadium (home of Warrington Wolves), Haig Avenue (the home of Southport), Knowsley Road (the home of St Helens RLFC) and the Racecourse Ground (home of Wrexham).

The team was the subject of a famous quote from Liverpool FC manager Bill Shankly, who, while telling a joke at the expense of local rivals Everton, declared, In my time at Anfield we always said we had the two best teams on Merseyside, Liverpool and Liverpool Reserves. Another version of the quote has Shankly saying, There's only two teams in Liverpool: Liverpool and Liverpool Reserves.

The most successful Liverpool Reserves manager was Roy Evans. Evans spent most of his playing career as a reserve team player, making only 11 appearances for the first team. After an injury ended his career in 1974, he was appointed manager of the reserves by Bob Paisley. Evans subsequently led the reserves to victory in a series of Central League championships, including three in his first three seasons, a four in a row sequence from 1978, and two more in the early 1980s. Throughout the history of Liverpool FC, many of the club's best known players have progressed through the reserve team. These include current first team squad member Jon Flanagan as well as Steven Gerrard, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen, Steve McManaman, Jamie Carragher and Raheem Sterling.

The Academy

The Academy

In 1998, a new state-of-the-art Youth Academy was opened in Kirkby, Metropolitan Borough of Knowsley. It replaced the older, more informal youth system, and enables the club to focus their youth development and scouting, employing new techniques and FA standards.

It was overseen by Frank McParland. The Academy now allows the main training ground at Melwood to be kept solely for the first team squad and allows all the areas there to be kept in excellent condition. It also provides a stepping stone for youngsters to progress to the highest levels of football at Liverpool.

Scouts attend many local youth matches looking for talented boys. A boy will then be invited to attend training sessions at the Academy. They are currently taken in as young as the age of six. Former England International player Jamie Carragher started at Liverpool when he was aged just nine, with Michael Owen joining at eleven, and Steven Gerrard joining at the age of eight. Current Liverpool first team player Jordan Rossiter first represented the club at U6 level.[4] At this age, the boys start by simply attending after-school training sessions, but as they reach their middle-teens, their academic needs will be taken over by the Academy if they are deemed athletically talented enough. As such, the Academy has a lecture theatre and a computer-equipped classroom.

The Academy can handle up to twenty boys in each year group, although the actual number in each year group is usually around eighteen. Between the ages of eight and twelve the boys play in eight-a-side games of three twenty-minute periods. It allows the boys to play as defenders or as attackers in small groups within a system and is not as physically demanding as playing eleven-a-side matches.

There are four full-size grass pitches and one with a Polytan surface. There are also a further seven smaller pitches and an indoor arena. The grounds cover an area of 56 acres.

On the walls of the indoor centre hang the words 'Technique', 'Attitude', 'Balance', and 'Speed'. 'TABS' is the key word preached at The Academy.[5] Academy director Alex Inglethorpe has said the remit of the academy is to produce physically, technically, tactically and mentally elite players with enough quality to represent the senior side in the Champions League.[2] Liverpool won the 2005 Champions league with two locally born academy graduates starting in the final.

Academy Partnerships

The Academy has a long-lasting affiliation with [7] LFC International Football Academy currently has branches in Scandinavia[8] (Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and Gran Canaria during winter), America[9] (Texas and Plymouth, the latter through an affiliate[10] with CS United Soccer Club), Egypt[11] (Cairo), South Africa[12] (Durban and Johannesburg), China[13] (Guilin), India[14] (Pune, in cooperation with DSK Shivajians), and Japan[15] (Tokyo). It used to run schools in Boston, Charlotte, Saint Vincent, Iceland, Belfast, Dublin, Katwijk, Madrid, Lisbon, Malta, Cyprus, Abuja, Nairobi, Mumbai, Singapore, Jakarta, Manila, and Hong Kong.[7]

Academy squads

As of 4 August 2015.[16][17][18][19][20][21]

Registered for the first team

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
32 MF Cameron Brannagan
39 GK Ryan Fulton
41 MF Jack Dunn
46 MF Jordan Rossiter
No. Position Player
48 FW Jerome Sinclair
56 DF Connor Randall
58 DF Daniel Cleary
68 MF Pedro Chirivella

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
35 DF Kevin Stewart (at Swindon Town for the season)[22]
36 FW Samed Yeşil (at FC Luzern for the season)[23]
40 MF Ryan Kent (at Coventry City until 16 January)[24]
43 DF Ryan McLaughlin (at Aberdeen until 31 January 2016)[25]
49 MF Jordan Williams (at Swindon Town for the season)[26]
51 DF Lloyd Jones (at Blackpool for the season)[27]
No. Position Player
54 MF Sheyi Ojo (at Wolverhampton Wanderers for the season)[28]
MF Sergi Canós (at Brentford until January 2016)[29]
MF Harry Wilson (at Crewe Alexandra until 5 January 2016)[30]
FW Taiwo Awoniyi (at FSV Frankfurt for the season)[31]
GK Lawrence Vigouroux (at Swindon Town for the season)[32]


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
GK Andrew Firth
DF Tom Brewitt
DF Sam Hart
DF Joe Maguire
DF Alex O'Hanlon
DF Kristóf Polgár
DF Corey Whelan
No. Position Player
MF Oviemuno Ejaria
MF Madger Gomes
MF Will Marsh
MF Adam Phillips
MF Daniel Trickett-Smith
MF Matthew Virtue-Thick


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
GK Shamal George
GK Caoimhin Kelleher
GK Owen Wheeler
DF Josh Dobie
DF George Johnston
DF Kane Lewis
DF Conor Masterson
DF Kris Owens
DF Mich'el Parker
DF Suleman Naeem
MF Bobby Adekanye
MF Trent Alexander-Arnold
No. Position Player
MF Jake Brimmer
MF Yan Dhanda
MF Bradley Garton
MF Liam Griffin
MF Herbie Kane
MF Callum Nicholas
MF Paulinho
MF Jack Watts
MF Harvey Whyte
FW Toni Gomes
FW Brooks Lennon


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
GK Daniel Atherton
DF Joshua Agbozo
DF Liam Coyle
DF Liam Collings
DF Fergus Grogan
DF Jordan Hunter
DF Andrew Jackson
DF Anthony Plant
DF Thomas Scully
MF Rhian Brewster
No. Position Player
MF Elijah Dixon-Bonner
MF Ethan Dwyer
MF Kieran Holsgrove
MF Adam Lewis
MF Luis Longstaff
MF Glen McAuley
MF Reese McGinley
MF Liam Robinson
MF Benjamin Woodburn
FW Okera Simmonds


Current coaching and medical staff

In addition, the Academy employ staff from the first-team.

Reserve team manager history


Liverpool Academy Players' Player of the Year

Players in bold are still playing for Liverpool.

Season Name Nationality Position Ref(s)
2013–14 Rossiter, JordanJordan Rossiter  England Midfielder [34][35]
2014–15 Carlos Teixeira, JoãoJoão Carlos Teixeira  Portugal Midfielder [36]


*Asterisk denotes a shared title.

Noted graduates

Those who made it at the Club

Liverpool's youth system has been successful over the years; many players who have come through it have gone on to feature in the first-team. The following players have gone on to play over 10 senior matches for the first team.


And those who made it elsewhere

Many of the former Liverpool youth and reserve team players have found success with other clubs. None of these players became established members of the Liverpool first team. 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s


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  • Who’s Who Of Liverpool (2006): Tony Matthews

External links

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