Liverpool F.C. Reserves and Academy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Liverpool Reserves
Liverpool FC.svg
Full nameLiverpool Football Club
Nickname(s)The Mighty Reds
GroundPrenton Park
ManagerNeil Critchley (U23s)
Barry Lewtas (U18s)
LeagueProfessional Development League 1
WebsiteClub website

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.

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[1] 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, four times in 1996, 2006, 2007 and 2019.

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 and Trent Alexander-Arnold, among many others.

Reserve team[edit]

Liverpool Reserves played in the FA Premier Reserve League. The Reserves won the regional division title in 2000 and again 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. The team also participated 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);[2] 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), Totally Wicked Stadium (the home of St Helens R.F.C.) and the Racecourse Ground (home of Wrexham).

The team was the subject of a famous[citation needed] 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 Trent Alexander-Arnold, Steven Gerrard, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen, Steve McManaman, Jamie Carragher and Raheem Sterling.

The Academy[edit]

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.

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.[3]

On the walls of the indoor centre hang the words 'Technique', 'Attitude', 'Balance', and 'Speed'. 'TABS' is the key word preached at The Academy.[4] 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.[1] Liverpool won the 2005 Champions league with two locally born academy graduates starting in the final.

Academy partnerships[edit]

The Academy has a long-lasting affiliation with MTK Budapest's Sándor Károly Football Academy[5] and maintains a number of football schools worldwide through partnerships with football clubs and commercial and sports organisations.[6] LFC International Football Academy currently has branches in Scandinavia[7] (Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and Gran Canaria during winter), America[8] (Texas and Plymouth, the latter through an affiliate[9] with CS United Soccer Club), Egypt[10] (Cairo), South Africa[11] (Durban and Johannesburg), China[12] (Guilin), India[13] (Pune, in cooperation with DSK Shivajians), and Japan[14] (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.[6]

Academy squads[edit]

As of 31 January 2019[15][16]


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
49 Scotland DF George Johnston
56 England MF Connor Randall
57 Wales MF Isaac Christie-Davies
60 England GK Shamal George
63 Republic of Ireland DF Conor Masterson
England GK Daniel Atherton
Guyana GK Kai McKenzie-Lyle
No. Position Player
Scotland DF Tony Gallacher
Spain DF Juanma
England DF Adam Lewis
Republic of Ireland DF Corey Whelan
England MF Liam Coyle
Republic of Ireland FW Glen McAuley

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
35 Canada FW Liam Millar (at Kilmarnock until June 2019)
55 England MF Herbie Kane (at Doncaster Rovers until June 2019)[17]
No. Position Player
Colombia DF Anderson Arroyo (at Gent until June 2019)[18]


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
51 Netherlands DF Ki-Jana Hoever
Czech Republic GK Vítezslav Jaroš
England GK Ben Williams
Wales DF Owen Beck
Wales DF Morgan Boyes
Scotland DF Tom Clayton
Finland DF Patrik Raitanen
England DF Remi Savage
England DF Jack Walls
Wales DF Neco Williams
England DF Rhys Williams
England MF Niall Brookwell
England MF Jake Cain
No. Position Player
England MF Leighton Clarkson
England MF Elijah Dixon-Bonner
Algeria MF Yasser Larouci
England MF Luis Longstaff
United States MF Matteo Ritaccio
Norway MF Edvard Tagseth
England MF Abdi Sharif
England MF Alex Turner
Bosnia and Herzegovina MF Dal Varešanović
England FW Jack Bearne
England FW Bobby Duncan
Germany FW Paul Glatzel
England FW Fidel O'Rourke


Current coaching and medical staff[edit]

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

Reserve team manager history[edit]


Liverpool Academy Players' Player of the Year[edit]

Players in bold are still playing for Liverpool.

Season Name Nationality Position Ref(s)
2013–14 Jordan Rossiter  England Midfielder [21][22]
2014–15 João Carlos Teixeira  Portugal Midfielder [23]
2015–16 Brad Smith  Australia Defender [24]
2016–17 Trent Alexander-Arnold  England Defender [25]
2017–18 Harry Wilson  Wales Winger [26]


*Asterisk denotes a shared title.

Noted graduates[edit]

Those who made it at the club[edit]

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 ten competitive matches for the first team.


And those who made it elsewhere[edit]

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.






  1. ^ a b "Alex Inglethorpe insists it is important for Liverpool FC to bring through local talent". Liverpool Echo. 7 September 2014.
  2. ^ "Reserves Travel – Liverpool FC". Liverpool FC. Retrieved 4 October 2011.
  3. ^ "Photos: Jordan's rise through LFC's ranks". Liverpool F.C. 23 September 2014.
  4. ^ Griffiths, Ian (22 March 2003). "Just for kicks". The Guardian. London.
  5. ^ "Sándor Károly Football Academy". Retrieved 24 March 2015. The Academy also has a partnership agreement with Liverpool FC. The Academy is regularly inspected by representatives of this outstanding club to be informed about the players´ development first hand.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ a b "LFC International Academy - International Courses". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  7. ^ "LFC International Football Academy Scandinavia". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  8. ^ "LFC International Football Academy America". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  9. ^ "CS United Soccer Club". CS United Soccer Club. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  10. ^ "LFC International Football Academy Egypt". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  11. ^ "LFC International Football Academy South Africa". Liverpool F.C. Archived from the original on 23 March 2015. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  12. ^ "LFC International Football Academy Guilin". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  13. ^ "LFC International Football Academy DSK Shivajians". Liverpool F.C. Archived from the original on 1 April 2015. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  14. ^ "LFC International Football Academy Japan". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  15. ^ "First Team". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 30 December 2018.
  16. ^ "Academy". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
  17. ^ "Herbie Kane joins Doncaster on loan". Liverpool F.C. 2 August 2018. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  18. ^ "Anderson Arroyo joins KAA Gent for 2018-19". Liverpool F.C. 23 August 2018. Retrieved 23 August 2018.
  19. ^ "Academy, U21s and U18s". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  20. ^ "Dynasty: The Joe Fagan Years 1983-1985". Archived from the original on 29 February 2012. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
  21. ^ "Suarez bags treble at awards dinner". Liverpool F.C. 6 May 2014. Retrieved 24 March 2015. Hot prospect Jordan Rossiter scooped the Academy Players' Player of the Year honour
  22. ^ "Rossiter: This prize means the world". Liverpool F.C. 8 May 2014. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  23. ^ "2015 Players Awards". Official Site Liverpool FC. 18 May 2015. Archived from the original on 25 April 2016. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  24. ^ "Quartet of accolades for Philippe Coutinho at LFC Players' Awards". Liverpool FC. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
  25. ^ Shaw, Chris (9 May 2017). "Sadio Mane takes top prizes at LFC Players' Awards". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  26. ^ Shaw, Chris (10 May 2018). "Mohamed Salah takes top prizes at LFC Players' Awards". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 5 August 2018.


External links[edit]