Frank Kramer's team squandered a 2-0 lead this afternoon against Liverpool FC U19 to lose their final Group E match with a goal in stoppage time. After failing to use several chances, Salzburg now go into the UEFA Youth League play-off in the spring.
Both teams showed how important the match was from the start. Liverpool had the better opening and got a big opportunity via Thomas Hill, only for Daniel Antosch to fly across in style to stop him. After Karim Adeyemi had our first opening, we soon put the ball in the net. Following a superb long ball from David Affengruber, Luka Sucic wasted no time in smashing the ball past the goalkeeper wonderfully to give us the lead. Frank Kramer's side were now more active and went into their challenges with more bite. Karim Adeyemi was denied by the goalkeeper from a diagonal ball, before Tobias Anselm was placed perfectly to turn the ball in for 2-0 on the rebound. The English visitors threatened again around the half-hour mark, but the ball took a deflection and flew a fraction wide. At the end of the first half, Peter Pokorny tested the Liverpool goalkeeper from 20 metres out, and the goalkeeper just managed to scramble it away. We therefore went into the break with a deserved 2-0 lead.
Salzburg started the second half coolly and confidently. Liverpool continued to try to find a way back into the game, but we were able to cut off most of their efforts early. After a long ball, Karim Adeyemi was knocked onto the floor but the referee failed to award anything. Junior Adamu and Peter Pokorny both sent long-range efforts just wide on quick breaks. In the 67th minute, the referee pointed to the spot after Daniel Antosch punched the ball clear and collided with an opponent. Harvey Elliott stepped up to convert the penalty and pull a goal back for the visitors. Straight after that, Peter Pokorny almost sealed the win for us by hitting the ball onto the crossbar from the edge of the penalty area. Completely out of nowhere, Thomas Hill equalised ten minutes before the end and put the Reds on course for direct qualification for the last 16. To compound our misery, Liverpool made it 3-2 in stoppage time with Jack Bearne pouncing on the break.
We tried really hard today and did many things really well, but we didn't make them count. We need to keep our opponents away from goal better in decisive moments as Liverpool barely had any chances. We could have finished it off ourselves, as we created enough opportunities. We are really disappointed today.
facts & Figures
Line-up: Antosch; Wallison, Affengruber, Okoh, Prass; Seiwald, Anselm (86' Schiestl), Pokorny, Sucic; Adeyemi (77' Sesko), Adamu (77' Bukta)
Yellow cards: None
Referee: Hrvoje Radic (Croatia)