Match reportLiverpool U21s produce fine display to beat Morecambe in EFL Trophy opener
Liverpool U21s began their journey in this season's EFL Trophy with a brilliant 3-0 win away at Morecambe on Tuesday evening.
First-half goals at Mazuma Mobile Stadium from Mateusz Musialowski, Calum Scanlon and Bobby Clark saw the young Reds defeat their League Two opposition in the Northern Group A opener.
It represents the club's first victory in the competition since entering in the 2019-20 campaign.
Liverpool needed their goalkeeper on two occasions early on as Marcelo Pitaluga did well to deny Michael Mellon and then Charlie Brown. But they steadied themselves after those scares and held a three-goal lead after 38 minutes.
The visitors opened the scoring in minute 13 following a counter-attack that ended with Melkamu Frauendorf slipping a pass to Musialowski, whose effort was deflected into the net.
For 2-0, Frauendorf was involved again as he met Clark's ball over the top and arrowed a cross into the box, where Scanlon was positioned to calmly direct past Adam Smith.
Morecambe came close to drawing one back, Brown's flicked header from a cross clipping the post and going behind.
But Liverpool made the most of that let-off and Clark was the next to get on the scoresheet. His strike inside the box took a deflection and looped over Smith after a patient-yet-probing period of possession.
Early into the second half, Musialowski was unable to successfully round the 'keeper following an underhit back-pass, with Tom Hill's follow-up dropping wide. Mellon then headed wide for Morecambe.
The Reds would withstand heavy spells of pressure from the hosts as they sought a route back into the affair.
But they would end up frustrated as Pitaluga was on hand to keep out a curler from Jake Taylor and Mellon went close again twice, before the final whistle blew to confirm a satisfying victory for Barry Lewtas' team.
Liverpool U21s: Pitaluga, Davidson, Pinnington (Jonas, 78), Miles, Chambers, McConnell (Pilling, 89), Hill, Frauendorf (Koumas, 64), Clark, Scanlon (Spearing, 78), Musialowski (Danns, 89).
Unused subs: Kelly, Kone-Doherty.
Liverpool U21s are next in action on Sunday when they host Wolverhampton Wanderers in Premier League 2 at the Kirkby Academy in a 1pm BST kick-off.
They then begin their campaign in the Premier League International Cup on Wednesday September 27 against AS Monaco.