Critchley sets record straight over Liverpool side to face Shrewsbury

Date published: Monday 3rd February 2020 2:26 - Matthew Briggs

Neil Critchley TEAMtalk

Stand-in Liverpool boss Neil Critchley says the side he fields on Tuesday will be an under-20 side, rather than an under-23 team.

Liverpool’s youngsters will get their second chance this season on representing the first team after they were thumped 5-0 by Aston Villa in the League Cup in December.

Critchley has confirmed that he is looking forward to seeing how his side do against League One outfit Shrewsbury in Tuesday’s FA Cup replay.

The bookies have the young Reds down as odds-on favourites, but Critchley has tried to offload the pressure on to their visitors.

“People are saying we’re an under-23 team but we’re not, we’ll be an under-19 or under-20 team at best. There’s always people saying young players don’t get opportunity in this country, but they’ll get one tomorrow and already had one this season – that’s what the manager does,” said Critchley.

“We are who we are. We want to be us on the night. We don’t want to complicate it. The boys will have enough to think about, we want them to enjoy it.

“The young players who have been given a first team opportunity have shown they can thrive and hopefully they can show that again tomorrow night.

“We are coming up against experienced players who know how to play their game. I’m interested to see how our young players will do.”

Asked about people suggesting his young side do not have a chance, he said: “Not us, inwardly. We are looking to give ourselves an opportunity to win the game. Is there more pressure on Shrewsbury to win the game now? Possibly. But that might work in our favour.



“You can’t buy the experience we had at Villa (in Carabao Cup). It’s probably worth a million of my coaching sessions. But we didn’t do well enough in both penalty boxes, that’s not a recipe for getting success. Our aim is to do a lot better than that tomorrow.

“They deserve their replay because of the way they performed. The boss said that.

“They created a lot of problems for us, they’ll be thinking of something similar tomorrow.

“Maybe the expectation is different for them now with the team they are going to face.”

Asked about the performance against Villa, which resulted in a pretty lop-sided 5-0 defeat, he said: “They’ll learn about themselves. I was pleased with a lot of aspects of that performance but I wasn’t pleased with the result.

“We didn’t do well in both penalty boxes. We didn’t keep the ball out of one end and we didn’t score in the other. Our aim is to do better at that tomorrow night.”



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