Match reportOakley Cannonier's hat-trick helps Liverpool U19s beat Ajax in Youth League
Oakley Cannonier scored a hat-trick to guide Liverpool U19s to a 4-0 victory over AFC Ajax in the UEFA Youth League on Tuesday afternoon.
The striker's goals at the Academy helped ensure the Reds made it two wins from two in the competition this season to cement their place at the top of Group A.
In front of the watching Sir Kenny Dalglish, Cannonier opened the scoring early in the first half before grabbing his second and third after the half-time interval, with substitute Lewis Koumas adding the fourth late on.
The action at the Kirkby complex got under way after a period of silence to mark the sad passing of Her Majesty The Queen.
It took just nine minutes for the hosts to take the lead, thanks to a sweeping team move that began with goalkeeper Harvey Davies.
The spell of dominance concluded with Isaac Mabaya's clip into the penalty area, where Cannonier was in position to place the ball into the bottom corner with a first-time finish.
The goalscorer nearly immediately doubled his tally for the day but saw a long-range hit turned behind for a corner by Tommy Setford.
Davies ensured his side took a lead into the break when he was at full stretch to tip David Kalokoh's curling effort onto the crossbar, before then saving from Jaydon Banel.
Liverpool often had to withstand spells on the back foot but earned themselves more breathing room in the contest in minute 54.
Bobby Clark won the ball back as Ajax attempted a short goal-kick and quickly passed to Cannonier, who rifled another clinical shot past Setford from the edge of the box.
Luke Chambers nearly made it 3-0 from near the halfway line moments later, only for the centre-back's shot to clip the post of an empty net after the 'keeper had rushed off his line to clear.
The third would arrive a quarter of an hour before the end, with Cannonier completing his treble.
Dominic Corness' through ball towards Koumas was deflected into the path of the No.9, who made no mistake in front of goal once again.
That was the 18-year-old's final contribution in the game as he limped off clutching the back of his leg.
Melkamu Frauendorf charged down a kick out from Setford but suffered an unfortunate slip that prevented him from tapping in, though he later set up the fourth and final goal.
In the first minute of added time, Frauendorf's cross from near the left touchline was thrashed into the back of the net by Koumas to add further gloss to an impressive win.
Liverpool U19s: Davies, Mabaya, Jonas, Chambers, Norris, Corness, Frauendorf, Clark, Doak (Koumas, 75), Kone-Doherty (McConnell, 63), Cannonier (Young, 79).
Unused substitutes: Hewitson, Miles, Osborne, Gyimah.