AcademyLiverpool U23s beat West Ham as Stewart returns from injury
Liverpool U23s produced a dominant performance to beat West Ham United 3-0 at the Academy on Sunday afternoon.
Second-half goals from Jack Bearne, Tyler Morton and Tom Clayton earned a comprehensive Premier League 2 victory for Barry Lewtas’ side.
There was further reason for cheer with the return of Layton Stewart, who came off the bench with around half an hour to play – the striker’s first match action since sustaining an ACL injury some 13 months ago.
The young Reds were on top from the off and Conor Bradley converted the rebound after Clayton had seen an early shot saved, only to be thwarted by the offside flag.
Lewtas’ team pressed superbly throughout the contest and one such action by Bearne brought about the opening goal soon after half-time, as he started a move by regaining possession and finished it by driving home a low strike.
Owen Beck then hit the crossbar from range but, just minutes later, it was 2-0 as Bearne again pressed and Clayton was denied by the goalkeeper, before Morton netted with a fine effort.
Liverpool were rampant and were seemingly unfortunate to see penalty appeals waved away when Bearne was felled in the area.
However, with 63 minutes on the clock, they made it three with an excellent sequence that saw Clayton win the ball back and drive into the box, where he met Bradley’s delivery with an unstoppable header.
Stewart’s long-awaited comeback followed and the forward nearly marked his return in perfect fashion, only for his shot to be cleared off the line following brilliant work by Beck down the left.
Liverpool U23s: Pitaluga, Bradley, Williams, Quansah, Beck, Clayton (Corness, 82), Clarkson, Morton, Norris, Bearne (Woltman, 80), Musialowski (Stewart, 63).
Unused subs: Kelly, Koumetio.