The UEFA Europa League is a competition that generally gives teams from top leagues the opportunity to experiment. As Liverpool FC prepare to take on Bordeaux in their opening Europa League clash, we look at the top three young players the Reds could blood in the tournament
The French town of Bordeaux welcomes the faltering Reds as the Ligue 1 side prepare to host Liverpool FC. The tournament is a welcome distraction for both teams who are performing well below expectations in their respective domestic leagues.
With Brendan Rodgers choosing to leave out 6 first team players that started at the weekend, Liverpool FC are expected to blood quite a few young players.
We pick out three of them who can go on to achieve great things.
Rossiter is an 18-year-old midfielder who is strong in the tackle, and is best playing as a deep-lying playmaker. The Scouser from the Liverpool’s academy is a massive admirer of Xabi Alonso and hopes to emulate the Liverpool cult hero some day.
Rossiter’s rise from the U18s to the first team has been quick, with the youngster scoring a wonderful 30 yard goal on his full Liverpool debut as a 17-year-old in September 2014.
The midfielder would have featured more if not for an injury, but has recovered to feature heavily in Liverpool’s pre-season and has already made one substitute appearance in the Premier League against Arsenal at the Emirates.
Big things are expected from Rossiter, who should use the opportunity on hand in the Europa League and other cup competitions to show just how good a player he can be.
If not for an injury, the powerful winger who has bags of pace and a hammer of a right foot would have featured more. He was arguably the best player for the Reds in pre-season after having cancelled his holiday to work on his shooting with the help of none other than Liverpool FC legend Kenny Dalglish.
However, the start of the season has not reflected the talent that Ibe has, and after a poor showing in the opening two games, he was dropped against Arsenal. The game was poor for his morale all in all, as his performance after coming on off the bench was probably his worst in a Reds shirt to date.
However, as they say, ‘form is temporary and class is permanent’. Ibe did come on against Manchester United at Old Trafford in the Reds’ 3-1 defeat and looked sharp. The player should use the opportunity against Bordeaux on Thursday night to stake a claim in the Reds XI.
Origi has had quite the roller-coaster ride in the last 18 months. Despite just being 18, the young forward was selected above Romelu Lukaku in the 2014 World Cup for Belgium and he did not disappoint. The superb showing at the World Cup earned him a transfer to Liverpool FC, but the youngster was loaned back to his old club Lille for another year.
The season, which had started with so much promise for Origi, turned out to be somewhat underwhelming with the player going without a goal for long periods during the season. The fans at Lille eventually turned on him, accusing him of lacking motivation, with the Belgian suffering the ignominy of being voted into Ligue 1’s worst XI of the season.
Whether it was a motivation issue or the problem of being given the number one forward’s role at Lille at such a young age, Origi has a lot to prove about his mental attributes if not technical ones.
If he is able to compliment his skills on the ball with his mentality, he can go on to be a special player. The Bordeaux game will be his first start, and it will be a familiar place for him to start showing some of that special ability.