Liverpool U18s produced a clinical display on Saturday afternoon to beat Newcastle United 3-0 at the Kirkby Academy.

James Balagizi scored twice within the opening 25 minutes to put Barry Lewtas' side on course for another convincing win in the U18s Premier League North.

The England U17 international then grabbed an assist as his cross allowed James Norris to complete the scoring in the first half.

The young Reds continued with their proficiency in front of goal in their first fixture since thrashing Everton 6-1.

It took just 10 minutes for them to break the deadlock. Jake Cain's corner was met by the towering Billy Koumetio, who saw his header parried out by Newcastle stopper Will Brown.

However, Balagizi was alert and in position to tap in the rebound from close range to give the hosts a deserved lead.

Then, a quarter of an hour later, the No.10 bagged his second. The forward calmly slotted home after tenacious work from Layton Stewart led to him dispossessing a Newcastle defender before crossing for his teammate.

Balagizi turned provider for Liverpool's third when he sent an accurate ball into the box. The cross found Norris at the back post as the No.9 looped a header over Brown.

Koumetio ensured the Reds headed into the half-time break with a clean sheet after a brilliant block to stop Kain Reed's goal-bound effort.

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On the hour mark, Tom Hill was denied what would have been a brilliant individual goal. After performing an exquisite turn, the midfielder's finish was kept out by Brown.

The visiting goalkeeper pulled off another spectacular stop moments later to prevent Stewart from getting on the scoresheet.

Newcastle then threatened but were frustrated as Stan Flaherty's shot took a deflection and struck the crossbar.

Liverpool looked at adding to their lead but maintained their shutout as they deservedly picked up the three points.   

Liverpool U18s: Ojrzynski, Walls (Bradley, 74), Savage, Koumetio, Beck, Cain, Brookwell, Hill, Stewart, Balagizi (Morton, 64), Norris (Corness, 84).

Unused substitutes: Davies, Quansah.

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