A youthful Liverpool 11 made hard work of reaching the Carabao Cup quarter-finals as they ended a 5-5 thriller against Arsenal with a penalty victory in front of the Kop.
Jurgen Klopp gave starts to 19-year-old Rhian Brewster, 16-year-old Harvey Elliott, 17-year-old Sepp van den Berg and to the impressive 18-year-old Neco Williams.
Other players such as Divock Origi and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain may have stolen the limelight with their heroics in front of goal, but Williams showed some real potential on his senior debut.
He managed to bag an assist for the last Liverpool goal and was given an 8.2/10 rating by WhoScored, and that’s some achievement considering his defence shipped five goals.
This Is Anfield agreed, mentioning how the youngster “grew into the game” and pointed to his early forward-thinking pass to Oxlade-Chamberlain which led to the own goal that started the scoring.
They also said he did look “susceptible” defensively, but it would be unfair to expect the finished article with such a lack of experience.
Sky Sports said: “Found life a little tough going at times on his Liverpool debut with a number of Arsenal attacks coming down his side, but didn’t let it affect him as he kept his head up to produce a last-gasp assist to send the game to penalties.
The fact he was faced with many Arsenal attacks, yet showed resilience to keep battling and maintain his confidence, is a credit to him.
Also, Trent Alexander-Arnold is being tipped as a world-class right-back and his defensive abilities have been questioned too, particularly by Gary Neville, so perhaps that part of his game isn’t as important while playing for this Liverpool team.
Sky Sports also pointed out that he made more tackles than anyone else on the night, and that suggests there’s more to come from his game than just forward vision.
Without him, Liverpool would have crashed out of the cup and that great strike from Oxlade-Chamberlain would have been worth nothing, so it’s important Williams gets a fair share of the praise.
Liverpool fans, what did you make of Neco Williams’ senior debut?Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!