Sidnei Tavares

Heavy Liverpool Defeat For City's Under-23s

Leicester City’s Development Squad fell to a 6-0 defeat by an experienced Liverpool side in Premier League 2 Division 1 at King Power Stadium on Sunday.
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The 2017 FIFA U17 World Cup Golden Boot winner Rhian Brewster, Wales senior international Ben Woodburn and Curtis Jones found the net for the Reds before half-time, while a hat-trick from Rafael Camacho cemented the visitors’ dominance on Filbert Way.

Senior Professional Development Phase Coach Steve Beaglehole made four changes to his starting line-up following last weekend’s 1-0 reverse to West Ham United at London Stadium.

In came Layton Ndukwu, Conor Tee, Sidnei Tavares and trialist Dylan Barkers – replacing Callum Wright, Khanya Leshabela, Tyrese Shade and Ryan Loft.

Over recent months, meanwhile, the likes of Harvey Barnes and Hamza Choudhury have settled into the first team, while defenders Darnell Johnson and Josh Knight headed out on loan.

With Shade and Wright injured, and Calvin Ughelumba suspended, it was an opportunity for some of the Club's younger players to experience a matchday environment on Filbert Way.

Liverpool, on the other hand, handed run outs to a host of players who have represented the Merseyside club’s first team, including England internationals Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Joe Gomez.

Following an impeccably observed minute’s silence to mark the 30-year anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy, action got underway at King Power Stadium.

The visiting Reds started brightest and they were ahead after just five minutes as Oxlade-Chamberlain, one of three permitted over-age outfield players, forced a save from Viktor Johansson.

While the Swedish shot-stopper did well to get a hand to the initial effort, Brewster was lurking in the penalty area to apply a tidy finish to the rebound.

Liverpool doubled that lead in the 17th minute, meanwhile, as Luke Thomas was punished for a late challenge on Brewster with the award of a penalty to the visitors.

Up stepped Woodburn to fire it into the bottom right corner, while Jones’ run and shot at goal made it 3-0 before the half-hour mark.

City’s best opportunities of the opening 45 minutes came in the final seconds as Tavares forced a low save from Shamal George before Alex Pascanu curled an effort just wide.

Despite Leicester’s best efforts to narrow the arrears in the second period, it was 4-0 in the 50th minute when Camacho fired a powerful drive past Johansson and in off the crossbar.

Camacho grabbed his second of the afternoon seven minutes later when he made sure Brewster’s effort, from the edge of the area, was not kept out by Thomas.

With just over 20 minutes to go, Camacho was initially denied a hat-trick by the post and then a block from Pascanu, but the visitors were on top for much of the second half.

Substitute Khanya Leshabela made an immediate impact from the bench and, when the South African was played in by Admiral Muskwe, his low strike was saved well by George.

Camacho, however, did get his hat-trick with 81 minutes on the clock, running into space and slotting it beyond Johansson to make it 6-0 to the visitors. 

Who impressed?

Development Squad

Beaglehole: A Big Experience For Young Players

Steve Beaglehole reflects on the Leicester City Development Squad's defeat by Liverpool at King Power Stadium on Sunday.

Khanya Leshabela was introduced in the 70th minute in an attempt to try and inject some intensity into the Foxes’ attacking play.

While the 19-year-old was unable to find the net, he nonetheless carved out some decent opportunities for the hosts and was unlucky to find Reds ‘keeper Shamal George in good form.

Where does it leave us?

Expand photo
Luke Thomas
Luke Thomas

Left-back Luke Thomas stays close to his man.

Leicester remain in seventh-place in Premier League 2 Division 1, with a points tally of 27, five above Tottenham Hotspur, who have two games to play, in the first relegation berth.

Coming up…

Expand photo
Ryan Loft
Ryan Loft

Ryan Loft was a first-half substitute for the Foxes.

City’s youngsters now have just one match of the Premier League 2 season remaining, a trip to Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal on Friday 26 April (7pm BST kick-off).

The details…

City: Johansson, Kaba Sherif, Thomas, Tavares, Hughes (c), Pascanu, Barkers (trialist) (Loft 37’), Dewsbury-Hall, Muskwe, Ndukwu, Tee (Leshabela 70’)

Subs not used: Davies, Hušek, Uche Rubio

Attendance: 1,852

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