Liverpool U18s get pre-season tour in Ireland underway with 2-0 win over Cork City

Liverpool under-18s got their pre-season tour in Ireland off to a good start with a promising 2-0 victory over Cork City

Neil Critchley's youngsters drew a large crowd at Turner's Cross, as a number of stars - including recently signed Bobby Adekanye, who registered his first assist in his first ever performance in a red shirt - as goals from Toni Gomes and Yan Dhanda gave them a deserved victory.

The young Reds started brightly and took little over quarter of an hour to take the lead, stretching out a leg to meet Adekanye's cross after some intelligent play down the right flank saw him beat his man to the by-line.

They dominated for much of the rest of the first-half, forcing Cork goalkeeper Alan Smith into numerous saves - as he denied Ben Woodburn and Callum Nicholas.

With a completely changed XI after the break, Liverpool lost none of their attacking intent - with ex-West Brom prospect Dhanda running the show.

It was he who converted Conor Masterson's cross in the 71st minute to double Liverpool's lead, as they saw out a comfortable victory over the SSE Airtricity League side. 

After the game, Critchley hailed his side's "very good performance" as one which they can take lots of positives away from. 

"The two boys, Toni and Yan, took their goals really well and it was a great start to our pre-season programme," the former Crewe Alexandra Academy Director said.

"We were delighted to come out here and it was fantastic for the young lads to play in front of a crowd of over 4,000 supporters."

Young Reds' tour to continue next week 

Critchley's side will now enjoy a week's rest before their next fixture, which will be against Galway United at the Eamon Deacy Park Ground on the 18th.

Meanwhile, the under-21s, who are also out in Ireland - will be taking on Waterford United this Friday night - before a fixture versus UCD in Dublin two days' later. They will then return to England and play Chester and Morecambe in quick succession.

Liverpool first-half XI - Cork: Owen Wheeler, Kane Lewis, Kris Owens, Michael Parker, Corey Whelan, Herbie Kane, Callum Nicholas,  Ben Woodburn, Toni Gomes, Brad Garton, Bobby Adekanye.

Liverpool second-half XI - Cork: Caoimhin Kelleher, Liam Coyle, Conor Masterson, George Johnston, Josh Dobie, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Okera Simmonds, Jack Watts, Jamie Ahearne, Rhian Brewster, Yan Dianda.

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