By Harvey Byrne
Liverpool Under-23s captain Harry Wilson has stated that playing on the same pitch as senior duo Danny Ings and Mamadou Sakho has helped him to raise his game.
The duo have dropped down to the Reds’ youth side after being left out of a large number of matches in the new campaign under manager Jurgen Klopp.
Ings, 24, has played just 26 minutes under the German boss in the new campaign during an EFL Cup clash against Derby.
He has been in prolific goal scoring form for the young side, but that hasn’t prompted Klopp into placing him in his senior side yet.
Meanwhile, Sakho, 26, hasn’t played since April 20th in a 4-0 clash against Everton, in which the France international scored.
He was handed a drugs ban after the Merseyside derby which ruled him out of the Reds’ last few fixtures and also France’s Euro 2016 host tournament. More recently he was sent home by Klopp during the club’s pre-season tour in the USA for disciplinary reasons.
However, Wilson has commented on playing with the duo and has stated he believes it’s helping him to raise his game.
“It was a bit weird first game leading out them senior players but I’ve done it a few times now so it’s becoming second nature,” told Wilson to the Liverpool Echo. “They’ve been a massive help, playing with that quality week in week out is going to benefit us all.
“When you’re playing with those individuals it makes you play that bit better because you want to impress them and make sure you deserved to be on the same pitch as the likes of Ings, Sakho and Kev (Stewart).
“When you cross over the white line the game takes over. You kinda forget you’re captain and just do what feels right. If the team needs a lift you try to give that lift to them, if they need a moment of inspiration you try to provide that. I feel it’s been good for me, it’s given me that extra responsibility but I’m relishing it at the moment.”
Wilson, 19, joined the club in back in 2005 and has risen through the academy ranks. He has been widely hailed as one of Liverpool’s brightest young stars.
The former Under-18s regular was introduced to Neil Critchley’s reserve squad during the 2013-14 season and has since become a key player under Michael Beale this year.
In other Liverpool news, midfielder Marko Grujic has a bright future at the club, according to Michael Beale.