By Arnar Steinsson.
Another season at the academy has started and quite a few tournaments and matches have been played: the Milk Cup where the squads did well but did not end up winning the tournament, the Newark Liberty International Soccer Summit in the USA where they lost in the final against Queens Park Rangers. The U13s also took part in the Soccer World Challenge in Japan where they had an impressive tournament but lost in the final against Barcelona.
The U21s have played league matches against Southampton (Loss), Manchester United (Win), Leicester (Draw), Sunderland (Win), Manchester City(Win).
The U18 have played league matches against Arsenal (Loss) Everton (Win) Chelsea (Loss) Norwich (Draw) West Ham (Loss) Fulham(Loss).
Of course results are secondary.
I have had to delay writing this piece due to one reason and that’s quite simply because I don’t have a full understanding of what has been happening and still don’t. One reason is the lack of broadcasting of the matches and another is the progressive changes being made at Kirkby. The reserves are a thing of the past now, so players around the age of 20 need a challenge that the U21 Premier League cannot provide and there are no B teams like some teams in Spain have for their academy players to help with the progress of players in this age group. As I write this, Brendan Rodgers has just spoken of the need for this option and I fully agree with him as it would put the age group between 20 and 23 in a much better position to develop their potential for starters.
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