FA Youth Cup: Liverpool 3 Leeds 1 – Steven Gerrard gives thumbs up to Kop kids

FA Youth Cup: Liverpool 3 Leeds 1 – Gerrard gives thumbs up to Kop kids

By
Dominic King

PUBLISHED:

20:56 GMT, 28 February 2013

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UPDATED:

22:11 GMT, 28 February 2013

Liverpool's Academy is brimming with
talent and Jordon Ibe, one of its most gifted pupils, showed why he is a
name to note by firing his side into the FA Youth Cup quarter-finals.

Ibe, who was brought to Anfield in an
initial 500,000 deal from Wycombe Wanderers in December 2011, scored
twice as Liverpool ran out 3-1 winners against Leeds to set up a trip to
Hull City in the next round. Jack Dunn completed the scoring in injury
time after Lewis Cook had pulled one back.

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Hot shot: Liverpool's Jordan Ibe scores the opening goal

Hot shot: Liverpool's Jordan Ibe scores the opening goal

Liverpool's Jordan Ibe celebrates his strike

Take that: Liverpool's Jordan Ibe celebrates his strike

Though Leeds – who had the backing off more than 250 hardy souls from Yorkshire – showed signs of promise in the opening exchanges and finished strongly, they had no answer when Ibe went impressively through the gears in the space of 10 first minutes to take the tie away from the visitors.

Frank McParland, Liverpool’s Academy Director, said: ‘It was a really physical game and I am just pleased we have come through it. Leeds were strong and had more experience and were older than most of our boys.

‘It is great to be in the next round and, of course, Jordon’s performance was excellent. He has been doing really well for the reserves this year and with him being 17, he can play in this competition next year. He took his goals really well.’

Playing on the left-flank and looking to dovetail at every opportunity with Jerome Sinclair – who became the youngest player in Liverpool’s history when he had a brief run out in the Carling Cup against West Brom last September – it was not difficult to see why Ibe is held in such regard.

High jump: Liverpool's Jordan Ibe tangles with Alex Mowatt

High jump: Liverpool's Jordan Ibe tangles with Alex Mowatt

Top man: Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard was at the match

Top man: Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard was at the match

He showed great poise in the 29th minute
to skip inside a challenge, after being teed up by Dan Trickett-Smith,
and rifle a shot through the legs of Leeds defender Afolabi Coker, that
left keeper Eric Grimes with no chance.

If the manner in which he dispatched that was impressive, his second
goal was even more so. When Liverpool midfielder Jordan Rossiter won a
challenge deep inside his own half, Ibe had no other option but to set
off on a run.

Such was his change of pace, though, he left Leeds’ Alex Purver trailing
before slaloming around Corey Roper to crack a drive past Grimes. Ibe
went on Liverpool’s tour to the USA last summer and, if he maintains
this progress, another call up to Brendan Rodgers’ squad will not be far
away.

This, however, was not a one-sided contest. Leeds, who came into this
tie having suffered just one defeat all season, started brightly and had
a goal correctly disallowed in the 24th minute when substitute Eoghan
Stokes was adjudged to have fouled Liverpool keeper Ryan Fulton.

Liverpool struggled to find a rhythm in the second half yet Leeds could
not make their domination of possession pay. Cook gave hope of a late
comeback when he cracked a shot past Fulton after being teed up by Alex
Mowatt but their pursuit of an equaliser left them susceptible to a
quick break.

So it proved in injury time when Dunn and substitute Kristoffer Peterson
combined to leave the first named with the easy task of finishing from
six yards.

Too much: Leeds' Lewis Walters was distraught at being substituted

Too much: Leeds' Lewis Walters was distraught at being substituted

Cool head: Kristoffer Peterson flicks the ball past Leeds keeper Eric Grimes

Cool head: Kristoffer Peterson flicks the ball past Leeds keeper Eric Grimes

Watching brief: Liverpool assistant manager Colin Pascoe

Watching brief: Liverpool assistant manager Colin Pascoe

Video: Ibe's sensational solo effort