Liverpool

Liverpool's youngest players since 2000

Mitchell Wilks
Kaide Gordon is Liverpool's latest teen prodigy
Kaide Gordon is Liverpool's latest teen prodigy / Stephen Pond/Getty Images
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Between the highs and lows of Liverpool's 80s success, Premier League decline and subsequent rise once more, youth has regularly been turned to as a spark for a potential flame.

With over 30 years of ups and more than a few downs, there's been plenty of room for experimentation and little to lose. Liverpool have regularly leaned on youth, with a number of interesting names debuting with the Reds.

Here are the youngest Liverpool players to debut since 2000.


32. Rafael Camacho (18 years, 7 months, 16 days)

Rafael Camacho
Rafael Camacho played for Liverpool in 2019 / Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

After spending time with Sporting CP and Manchester City, Liverpool snapped up winger Rafael Camacho in 2016.

A debut eventually came in 2019, but Camacho re-joined Sporting later that year.

31. Martin Kelly (18 years, 7 months, 12 days)

Martin Kelly
Martin Kelly was at Liverpool before Crystal Palace / Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Martin Kelly's rise coincided with a bright spell under Rafa Benitez and highlighted a fine use of the loan system.

Having been a star in the reserves, he debuted in December 2008 in the Champions League, before heading out on loan to Huddersfield in 2009. He returned and became a squad player until he joined Crystal Palace in 2014.

30. Jonjo Shelvey (18 years, 6 months, 26 days)

Jonjo Shelvey
Elite celebration / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Having seen him debut for Charlton aged just 16, Liverpool paid in excess of £1m to sign Jonjo Shelvey in 2010.

Shelvey first appeared for the Reds in a penalty shootout defeat to Northampton Town that September, and remained with the club until 2013 when he signed for Swansea.

29. Sheyi Ojo (18 years, 6 months, 20 days)

Sheyi Ojo got his Liverpool debut from Jurgen Klopp
Sheyi Ojo got his Liverpool debut from Jurgen Klopp / Steve Bardens/Getty Images

After ripping it up at MK Dons by playing for the Under-18s aged 13, Liverpool fended off competition from just about every angle to sign Sheyi Ojo in 2011.

After a few successful loans, Ojo was given his debut in the FA Cup in 2016, but has since fallen back into the loan system and has a fight on his hands if he wants a career with the Reds.

28. Neco Williams (18 years, 6 months, 17 days)

Neco Williams
Neco Williams made his Wales debut soon after his Liverpool bow / Visionhaus/Getty Images

Having been with the club since the age of six, a debut against Arsenal in the League Cup in 2019 was a dream come true for Neco Williams.

Williams has since been involved with the first team more regularly and plays a rotational role in the squad, although he has struggled to push on because of competition from Trent Alexander-Arnold.

27. Jake Cain (18 years, 5 months, 2 days)

Jake Cain
Jake Cain made an FA Cup appearance in 2020 / Visionhaus/Getty Images

Midfielder Jake Cain was handed his first team debut in January 2020 as a part of Liverpool's youngest ever lineup.

With Jurgen Klopp's squad resting up during the winter break, Cain and others had the chance to impress against Shrewsbury in the FA Cup.

26. Miki Roque (18 years, 4 months, 27 days)

Malcolm Couzens Archive
Miki Roque passed away in 2012 / Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Plucked away from Spain by Rafa Benitez aged 17, defender Miki Roque signed for Liverpool in 2005 and made his debut a year later in the Champions League.

Roque sadly passed away following a battle with cancer in 2012 at the age of just 23.

25. Adam Morgan (18 years, 4 months, 2 days)

Adam Morgan faded out swiftly
Adam Morgan faded out swiftly / PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

At youth level, striker Adam Morgan went on a run of 18 goals from 16 games which catapulted him into the reserve squad.

He later made his official Liverpool debut in August 2012 as a late substitute in the Europa League, but has since spent life after Liverpool knocking around at semi professional level.

24. Samed Yesil (18 years, 4 months, 1 day)

Ashley Williams, Samed Yesi
Yesil battles with Ashley Williams / Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Having impressed Brendan Rodgers, Liverpool signed Bayer Leverkusen youth talent Samed Yesil in 2012 for roughly £1m.

Yesil's debut was a start against West Brom in the League Cup that year, but injuries and inconsistencies ravaged his time with the Reds and he was eventually released in 2016.

23. Pedro Chirivella (18 years, 3 months, 25 days)

Pedro Chirivella
Pedro Chirivella was at Liverpool for seven years in total / Romain Perrocheau/Getty Images

Liverpool put a lot of stock into Spaniard Pedro Chirivella when they signed him in 2013, moving him over and providing housing and work for his family.

The midfielder debuted as a substitute for Kolo Toure in the Europa League in 2015 before falling victim to the loan circle. He only left in 2020.

22. Emiliano Insua (18 years, 3 months, 21 days)

Emiliano Insua
Emiliano Insua went on to play 62 games for Liverpool / Clive Mason/Getty Images

Despite barely being in the senior set-up at Boca Juniors, Emiliano Insua had impressed enough at youth level to warrant European attention and moved to Liverpool in in 2007, initially on loan.

His debut came that April in a defeat to Portsmouth and his deal was made permanent soon after. He was even a regular in 2009/10 but left in 2011, and has since played in MLS, Turkey, Germany and back home.

21. Jon Flanagan (18 years, 3 months, 10 days)

Jon Flanagan
Flanagan has one England cap to his name / Paul Gilham/Getty Images

11th April 2011. The day the Scouse Cafu was unleashed on the world.

Jon Flanagan debuted with a 90 minute performance in a 3-0 win over Manchester City and earned astonishingly rave reviews, before dwindling into absolutely nothing. Let's just not talk about this one again.

20. Jack Bearne (18 years, 3 months, 2 days)

Neil Critchley,Jack Bearne
Bearne being given words of advice during his senior debut / James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Versatile forward Jack Bearne was handed his senior debut as a substitute in a League Cup tie against Aston Villa in 2019.

You know, the one where Liverpool had to play a bunch of children because they'd been scheduled two games of football inside 24 hours of each other, in two entirely different countries.

19. Joe Gomez (18 years, 2 months, 17 days)

Joe Gomez
Joe Gomez joined Liverpool from Charlton / Romain Perrocheau/Getty Images

An impressive season as a senior with Charlton was enough to convince Liverpool to sign teenager defender Joe Gomez.

Gomez registered an assist for the winning goal on his debut in August 2015, but suffered an ACL injury mere weeks later. Injuries have continued blight the player. But when fit he has played a big part in winning trophies.

18. Conor Bradley (18 years, 2 months, 13 days)

Conor Bradley
Conor Bradley hails from Northern Ireland / Stephen Pond/Getty Images

Remarkably, right-back Conor Bradley became the first player from Northern Ireland to play for Liverpool in 67 years when he made a Carabao Cup debut against Norwich in September 2021.

Even Jurgen Klopp was shocked by that fact.

17. Antonio Barragan (18 years, 1 month, 29 days)

Antonio Barragan, Sadio Mane
Antonio Barragan later played against Liverpool for Middlesbrough / Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Impressing in the youth ranks at Sevilla, Liverpool made Antonio Barragan their youngest ever foreign debutant in August 2005 when he appeared in a Europa League win over CSKA Sofia.

He never broke through with the Reds, but came back for another slice of the Premier League having signed with Middlesbrough in 2016 following their promotion to the top flight.

16. Leighton Clarkson (18 years, 1 month, 28 days)

Leighton Clarkson
Clarkson is gaining minutes in the Reds' youth ranks once again / Gareth Copley/Getty Images

Another substitute in Liverpool's heroic cup tie against Aston Villa in 2019, the bizarre fixture for neutrals was actually a special moment for plenty of lads involved with the club.

Leighton Clarkson was one, and the debut has since turned into a handful more appearances with the first team and a long-term contract.

15. Billy Koumetio (18 years, 25 days)

Koumetio made his debut in the Champions League
Koumetio made his debut in the Champions League / HENNING BAGGER/Getty Images

Born in 2002, Liverpool snapped up defender Billy Koumetio and handed him his first professional contract aged 17.

Koumetio made his debut in the Champions League against FC Midtjylland in December 2020 and is raved about by supporters. Watch this space.

14. Trent Alexander-Arnold (18 years, 18 days)

Trent Alexander-Arnold is already one of Liverpool's best ever Premier League players
Trent Alexander-Arnold is already one of Liverpool's best ever Premier League players / AFP Contributor/Getty Images

Trent, your debut against Tottenham was all the way back in 2016 now.

Please, please ditch the number 66 and pick a more appropriate one. Sincerely, all of football.

13. Curtis Jones (17 years, 11 months, 8 days)

Curtis Jones
Curtis Jones has since taken over a shirt number once worn by Steven Gerrard / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Now we're not trying to book him into a Jon Flanagan-type overhyping angle here, but there is something very special around Curtis Jones.

The local lad made his debut in January 2019 having been with the club since he was nine, and has since developed tremendously under Jurgen Klopp. Playing alongside Thiago Alcantara in the next few years could be absolutely crucial in his development.

12. Sepp van den Berg (17 years, 9 months, 5 days)

Sepp van den Berg,Jurgen Klopp
Sepp van den Berg moved to Liverpool from PEC Zwolle / James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Liverpool spending £1.3m on a relatively unknown Sepp van den Berg in 2019 made the teenager feel like a rather big deal.

He debuted that September in the League Cup against MK Dons, but has since had to prove himself out on loan at Preston. You'd have thought there would've been a chance for him to shine in the wake of injuries to Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk.

11. Jordan Rossiter (17 years, 5 months, 30 days)

Jordan Rossiter
He even had the Steven Gerrard shirt tuck... / Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Having come through the youth ranks, there was a belief that midfielder Jordan Rossiter was a serious talent.

He won the 2013/14 Academy Player of the Year award and was handed his first team debut in September 2014. Better yet, he opened his account on his debut with a shot rifled low and beyond the Middlesbrough goalkeeper. He left for Rangers in 2016.

10. Jordon Ibe (17 years, 5 months, 11 days)

Jordon Ibe got an assist on his Liverpool debut
Jordon Ibe got an assist on his Liverpool debut / Julian Finney/Getty Images

Jordon Ibe debuting in the professional game aged 15 with Wycombe made him look a star from the off.

Liverpool snapped him up and he was given his debut for the Reds at 17 in 2013, against Queens Park Rangers,. What's more impressive, however, was how they managed to sell him to Bournemouth for £15m.

9. Raheem Sterling (17 years, 3 months, 16 days)

Raheem Sterling
Raheem Sterling was 17 when he first appeared for Liverpool / Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

When substituted on against Wigan in March 2012, Raheem Sterling became the third-youngest player to debut for Liverpool.

A 2014 Golden Boy award would follow, as would two Young Player of the Season awards from Liverpool, before he earned a move to Manchester City in a deal worth up to £49m.

8. Thomas Hill (17 years, 2 months, 4 days)

tom hill
Hill in action against Aston Villa / Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images

A midfielder by trade, Tom Hill was given a start against Aston Villa in the League Cup in 2019, and signed a new deal in August 2020. Watch out for his name in the years to come.

7. Ben Woodburn (17 years, 1 month, 11 days)

Ben Woodburn, Jurgen Klopp
Ben Woodburn had Liverpool fans very excited when he made his debut / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The hype was serious in November 2016 when Ben Woodburn became Liverpool's third youngest ever player at that time.

It was amplified further when he broke Michael Owen's record to become the club's youngest scorer three days later. He's struggled to progress as expected, however, and has since become lost in the shuffle.

6. Ki-Jana Hoever (16 years, 11 months, 20 days)

Ki-Jana Hoever
Liverpool were happy to sell Hoever / James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images

You don't just hand first team, senior football debuts to any random 16-year-old, so when they get one, it's serious business.

Ironically, Ki-Jana Hoever's debut came against Wolves in January 2019; the club he would later be sold to the following year. The transfer felt like a serious coup for Wolves and the Dutchman's progression in the coming years will be an interesting watch.

5. Kaide Gordon (16 years, 11 months, 16 days)

If you're good enough, you're old enough
If you're good enough, you're old enough / ADRIAN DENNIS/Getty Images

Kaide Gordon had not long turned 16 when he made his professional debut for hometown club Derby in December 2020. But within a few weeks, Liverpool had agreed to pay compensation potentially rising to £3m.

Gordon impressed in the youth ranks and was handed a debut, as a starter, in September 2021 in the Carabao Cup against Norwich.

4. James Norris (16 years, 8 months, 13 days)

James Norris
Norris is impressing at youth level / Lewis Storey/Getty Images

The youngest of the young in Liverpool's fixture against Villa in December 2019, James Norris would've barely finished secondary school at the time.

Norris has since signed professional terms and continues to impress in Liverpool's youth ranks.

3. Jack Robinson (16 years, 8 months, 7 days)

Jack Robinson
Jack Robinson went on to play in the EFL after leaving Liverpool / Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Born in Cheshire and having progressed through the club's youth ranks, 16-year-old Jack Robinson was given his debut in Rafa Benitez's final game in charge in May 2010.

Opportunities beyond that were limited and Robinson eventually left in 2014, but he has since forged a reasonably successful career as a Championship level player.

2. Harvey Elliott (16 years, 5 months, 21 days)

Harvey Elliott
Liverpool have enormous hopes for Harvey Elliott / James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

If you can look beyond the questionable haircuts - difficult - then underneath there is a supremely talented footballer in Harvey Elliott.

He debuted for Fulham at 15 years old (fifteen!) and was swiftly snapped up by the Reds in 2019. He was handed his Liverpool debut that September against MK Dons and has become an important part of the Reds' squad returning from a loan at Blackburn.

1. Jerome Sinclair (16 years, 6 days)

Jerome Sinclair is Liverpool's youngest ever player
Jerome Sinclair is Liverpool's youngest ever player / Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images

The pressure that comes with being handed a senior debut for Liverpool just six days after your 16th birthday is unparalleled. Obviously.

Jerome Sinclair was given that unique opportunity in September 2012 under Brendan Rodgers, and remains Liverpool's youngest debutant ever. Sinclair has struggled since and been as far as Bulgaria to kickstart his career, somewhat unsuccessfully.

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