Plenty has been said and written about the transfer activity of Liverpool in relation to the comings and goings of players from the first team squad. However, the additions to our academy sides have received very litte publicity.
We at TBT take great pride in the focus we give to our academy sides, and because of this, we asked Michael Sweeting to give us, and you, a quick run down of not only our new academy signings, but also the latest news on some potential new arrivals.
Sergi Canos – 16 – Arrived from Barcelona
16 year old Spaniard Sergi Canos joins the Academy from Barcelona, who have launched an appeal to the Spanish government to change employment laws in response to losing their star ‘Cadet A’ player. The pacey winger can also play up front and will be expected to join up with Steve Cooper’s U18s team.
Kristof Polgar – 16 – Arrived from MTK
Hungarian centre back Kristof Polgar has been at the Academy for a couple of months following a successful trial from Liverpool’s feeder club MTK. The stylish centre back made a few appearances for the U16s at the end of the season including an impressive display in the 1-0 win over The Right to Dream Academy in March. This season he will be considered a key player for the U18s.
Herbie Kane – 14 – Arrived from Bristol City
Liverpool recently completed the signing of 14 year old midfielder Herbie Kane from Bristol City. Kane had broken into the Bristol City U18s team but will be expected to turn out at U15 level for Liverpool.
Brooks Lennon – 15 – Real Salt Lake
Brooks Lennon trialed with Liverpool U16s in March this season, scoring the only goal in the 1-0 win over The Right to Dream Academy. The winger will be back for a second trial in July when he accompanies the U16 side to the Milk Cup.
Unai Lopez – 17 – Athletic Bilbao
Attacking midfielder Unai Lopez was recently linked with a £1m move to Liverpool following an impressive season for Bilbao’s U19 side. However, the chances of Liverpool securing the services of the youngster seem remote since he has already turned down a move to Barcelona citing fears over moving away from his family.
Matheus Biteco – 18 – Gremio
Liverpool scouts at the Toulon Tournament were particularly impressed with Brazilian defensive midfielder Matheus Biteco. The youngster’s price tag of £4m suggests he is being looked at as a direct back-up for Lucas Leiva.
Pedro Chirivella – 16 – Valencia
Valencia’s U17 captain Pedro Chirivella is said to be close to securing a move to Liverpool after his agents informed the club of his intention to leave. The Spanish side are loathe to lose their most outstanding talent though and are attempting to contest the deal in court, demanding £4m compensation.
Yan Dhanda – 14 – West Bromwich Albion
YouTube sensation Yan Dhanda won himself a contract at West Brom through a TV show. Since then he has gone on to attract interest from Arsenal and Liverpool. Liverpool are understood to be the players preferred choice but negotiations are ongoing.
Diego Gonzales – 16 – Cadiz
Spanish left back Diego Gonzalez was taken on trial by Liverpool for one week after making his first team debut for Cadiz. Although the Academy staff were impressed with the pacey defender, they’ve decided not to follow up their interest.
Silvio Malkoc – 15 – NK Trje
Croatian midfielder Silvio Malkoc enjoyed a two week trial at The Academy earlier this season following a strong of impressive performances for club and country at youth level. With Croatia officially joining the European Union on July 1st then Liverpool may rekindle their interest in the near future.
Kyle Gruno – 14 – USA National Team
Centre back Kyle Gruno spent most of this season touring Europe with the USA national U15 side. After a man of the match performance against both Real Madrid and Barcelona, the New Jersey born defender, who holds an Italian passport, was invited for a 10 day trial at Liverpool.
Rodney Kongolo – 16 – Feyenord
The Mirror reported in March that Liverpool were favourites for the signature of new Dutch wonderkid Rodney Kongolo for £1.5m. Since then however it appears Liverpool have turned their attention elsewhere and Man United look set to sign the highly rated midfielder.
Kevin Ray Mendoza – 18 – Viborg FF
Liverpool fought off competition from Manchester City and Arsenal to land Danish goalkeeper Kevin Ray Mendoza on trial. Although he was available for just £1m Liverpool haven’t as yet followed up their interest following a two-week trial.