Three Academy starlets spent an afternoon touring the wards at Alder Hey children's hospital in Liverpool on Tuesday.

Brad Smith, Ryan Fulton and Ryan McLaughlin took time out from their daily routine to visit the hospital in West Derby and engage with young patients and their families.

Liverpool FC has strong links to Alder Hey, which cares for 270,000 children and young people each year and is a leader in research into children's medicines, infection, inflammation and oncology.

Last week, Luis Suarez helped hand over a cheque for £12,000 to the hospital, after the funds were raised in memory of Academy starlet Stephen Packer, who was cared for at Alder Hey.

Yesterday's trip was all about brightening up the day for some of the children at the hospital.

Afterwards, U21s winger Smith, said: "To see the smiles on all of the kids' faces on our monthly visit really makes our day.

"It reminds you just how important it is to come out and support the local community and it's one of our favourite things to come and do."

Goalkeeper Fulton added: "It's great to come and visit the kids at Alder Hey. It's very touching to see how excited they get by us coming here. The hospital does such a fantastic job and it's brilliant to be able to support that."

Part of the philosophy at the club's Academy is to develop outstanding players and good human beings - and the monthly trips to Alder Hey help this process.

Ryan McLaughlin said: "It's unfortunate that there are so many poorly children at Alder Hey hospital, but seeing the fantastic facilities available here alongside the dedicated staff is great."

In 2015, Alder Hey will open a purpose built hospital in the park next door to its current site.

The hospital's donation page are looking to raise £30m to fund the latest lifesaving medical equipment, facilities and research. You can donate by clicking here