For their training camp in Dubai this month, Liverpool brought 13 youth academy players with them, although two others were unable to join the group owing to injuries.
Young players called up from the academy are joining a strong group of senior players for the Reds in Dubai.
Impressive Ben Doak has joined the team along with the likes of Stefan Bajcetic, Luke Chambers, Melkamu Frauendorf, and Layton Stewart.
The two upcoming friendlies against Lyon and AC Milan as well as the warm-weather practice sessions provide those young players a chance to showcase their talent.
2 Liverpool plays missing in the Dubai training
However, for two other people, the trip to Dubai came too soon. If not for unfortunate circumstances. Isaac Mabaya and Oakley Cannonier would have undoubtedly received invitations to Dubai.
Mabaya has been out since the Liverpool under-19s’ 4-1 UEFA Youth League triumph over Rangers on October 4 after being substituted due to an ankle injury.
Given his preseason participation and Trent Alexander-Arnold’s absence due to the World Cup, it is very possible that the 18-year-old right-back would have gone to Dubai had he been healthy.
Likewise, prolific scorer Cannonier, who hasn’t played since the same competition’s 4-3 victory against Rangers on October 12, could have done so.
Cannonier, who is also 18, has scored nine goals in 11 games for the academy so far this year. With seven goals in four outings, he leads the UEFA Youth League in goals scored.
However, ongoing injuries have halted his progress and may have even prevented him from making his first-team debut against Derby in the third round of the Carabao Cup last month.
The ultimate penalty shootout victory saw Stewart, 20 years old, start, but elite development coach Vitor Matos certainly would have suggested Cannonier as well if he had been healthy.
Both Mabaya and Cannonier are anticipated to speed up their recuperation in the upcoming weeks, with the striker likely to make a return after Christmas.
The two may have missed an opportunity by not attending the Dubai camp, but they still have time on their side at 18 and can work to continue making an impression until the upcoming preseason.
Liverpool’s 5 upcoming fixtures
|Sunday 11th December||14:00||Liverpool vs Lyon|
|Friday 16th December||15:30||Liverpool vs AC Milan|
|Thursday 22nd December||20:00||Manchester City vs Liverpool|
|Monday 26th December||17:30||Aston Villa vs Liverpool|
|Friday 30th December||20:00||Liverpool vs Leicester City|