Owen and Carra help win Youth Cup

17 May 1996

Michael Owen and Jamie Carragher showed just why they would go on to become Anfield greats of the future as they helped Liverpool clinch the FA Youth Cup for the first time in the club's history at the expense of West Ham United.

The Reds took on a Hammers outfit that boasted the much-vaunted talents of Frank Lampard and Rio Ferdinand in the first-leg at Upton Park, and despite being unable to call upon the goalscoring prowess of Owen in East London, they still ran out 2-0 winners courtesy of strikes from Jon Newby and substitute Davy Larmour.

It set up a mouthwatering second-leg at Anfield in which a bumper crowd of 20,600 supporters packed into Anfield hoping to witness the club's first success at youth level.

However, they did not get off to the best of starts as Frank Lampard slashed the Reds' lead in half when he gave West Ham a shock lead in the first minute.

But with Carragher starring in a central defensive role that he would one day make his own in the senior side, the hosts stood firm, and it was no surprise when Owen showed the type of finishing quality that would see him become a Kop idol to drag the home side level on 40 minutes.

It was just the lift the young Reds needed and they went on to wrap up a 2-1 victory and a 4-1 win on aggregate 10 minutes after the restart courtesy of Stuart Quinn.

The full-time whistle was greeted by jubilant celebrations both on and off the pitch, with boss Hugh McAuley laying particular praise at the feet of central midfielder cum centre back Jamie Carragher.

"Jamie's proved his worth in this position and there's a fair possibility that it will be his best," said McAuley.

"He's a natural footballer who understands the game. He's a good passer and he also competes in the air.

"The lads did the club and themselves proud. We are all delighted."