Despite boasting just an average age of 19 years old, Liverpool’s youthful side pushed the club into the fifth round of the FA Cup with a replay win over Shrewsbury Town at Anfield – and James Milner has reacted on Instagram, after watching on.
The average age of the side was the youngest ever fielded by a senior Liverpool team, but that did not affect their confidence. The likes of Neco Williams, Curtis Jones, Pedro Chirivella and Harvey Elliott all impressed against the League One side.
Indeed, such is Liverpool’s style of football, it was right-back Williams that impressed the most. He had a number of chances to score for the Reds, and the 18-year-old tested Shrewsbury goalkeeper Max O’Leary. He was given the man of the match award.
Eventually, Liverpool did make the breakthrough – but only after Shaun Whalley’s goal was ruled out for offside. Williams played a dangerous-looking cross-field pass, but Ro Shaun Williams inadvertently headed it beyond O’Leary.
Milner, 34, watched on from the sidelines despite being in the midst of a winter break – one that even prevented Jurgen Klopp from attending the match – and it is believed he offered his support and a helping hand to the Liverpool youngsters.
Indeed, Critchley was quoted by the Evening Standard as saying: “He trained with us yesterday, asked if he could come along and the answer was, ‘Yes certainly of course you can!’ He asked if he could come in the dressing room: ‘Of course’.
“To have someone like him – with what he has achieved and what he stands for – to have him give words of advice was special for the players. He was animated. He was vocal, I could hear him. I can’t thank him enough.”
The former Leeds, Aston Villa, Newcastle, Manchester City and England star posted on Instagram after watching his young teammates secure a fifth-round clash against Chelsea – applauding Neil Critchley’s side.