Ahead of tonight's clash at Leicester City, we spoke to Chris Buchtmann about the Youth Cup, the reserves and what it meant to be voted in the top 10 ones to watch in 2009.
Well Chris, it's Youth Cup time again. What does the competition mean to you?
It's a great competition. I have some fond memories from last season. It's very important to the young players in England and gives us all a chance to play in some big stadiums.
You played in the last round at home to Wolves - how different is this Liverpool side to the one that featured in last year's final?
We are a much younger side this year. The team is made up of mainly first and second years, but I think we have a lot of ability. Just look at the last round against Wolves. I think we played a solid 90 minutes and scored two good goals.
What was the highlight of last season's run to the final?
It was definitely the final itself. Getting to play in front of such big crowds at both the Emirates and Anfield was a great experience. We may have been well beaten on both occasions by a very strong Arsenal side, but I still think that if you ask any of the other players, it was their favourite part of last year's run.
You spend your time between Melwood and the Academy now don't you? How does that work?
Yes, I generally train at Melwood and have been playing with the reserves this season. We have a very strong team this year and that's reflected in the league table. The coaches are always talking about ways to benefit both the under-18 team and John McMahon's side - when they need me at the Academy for the Youth Cup or a league game, then I'm happy to come back.
When you have been with the under-18s, how have you found Rodolfo Borrell?
He is a very good coach. He has some interesting ideas and I think he will be a big success with Liverpool in the future.
It's Leicester City in the fourth round tonight. They've enjoyed a great season so far but what do you know about them?
They are a very big, physical side. I think they put four past both Arsenal and Tottenham so that gives you an idea of how strong they are. We know we face a tough task.
They beat us 3-0 at home earlier this season - how can we turn that around at the Walkers Stadium?
I didn't play in that game, but from what the lads have told me, it was very difficult. I think we have improved since then and we may have a few players involved with a bit more experience. It's another chance to play in a relatively new stadium so we will look forward to it. We are Liverpool so we will always believe we can win.
Given the recent weather, how have preparations for the match gone on the training pitch?
To be honest, they've gone okay. We've done a fair bit of work on the indoor pitches and we are ready for the test.
There are a lot of young players in this Youth Cup team - do you feel an extra sense of responsibility given that you are a bit older and more experienced?
Yes, I suppose I do. I know what the competition is about and will try to help my teammates as much as possible.
For fans who aren't yet familiar with your playing style, what type of player are you?
I play on the left side. I prefer midfield but I've played at left-back quite a bit over the past 12 months and I enjoy that too. I like to get forward and have tried to improve the defensive part of my game. I don't really like talking about my attributes but I suppose one of my major strengths is my crossing.
We've already touched upon your involvement with the reserves. How is life under John McMahon?
It's great. He's an excellent coach and he's really got the best out of us so far this season. I hope we can keep improving and finish the season in style.
You played a starring role for Germany in the under 17 European Championship last year - what was that experience like?
It was incredible. We won the tournament and it was my first major honour in the game. We beat England 4-0 along the way too! I was quite pleased with how I played throughout the competition.
You were named by UEFA as one of the top 10 rising stars to watch in 2009 - how did that make you feel?
It's very nice, but I haven't achieved anything in the game yet. Obviously I'm proud, but I want to make sure I keep working hard and make an impression with the reserves. If I make it into the first-team in the next few years, then that is when I can say I have made an impact.
Finally, what are your aims for the rest of the season?
Hopefully we can do well in the Youth Cup again. On a personal note, I want to keep improving and hope to play regularly for the reserves.