The Liverpool winger is the only first teamer still on international duty and he looks like he’s making the most of his summer. After benching him in the previous win against Netherlands, Aidy Boothroyd brought Ojo back into the starting lineup for the final group stage match against Croatia.
The 19-year old immediately rewarded the manager’s selection, laying on delightfully for Chelsea forward Izzy Brown to put away inside of five minutes to give the Young Lions the lead.
With the win making it three from three, the promising side comes out tops in the group, gearing up to take on Italy in the semi-finals this upcoming Thursday. UEFA then seems keen to not muck about, with the winner slated to meet one of either Portugal or France in the final only three days later on July 24.
Whether or not he has a chance to continue into the knockout stages and ultimately lift any silverware for country, Ojo will be eager to hop on a California-bound plane to to join up with the first team for the second half of the club’s preseason with the mind to impress himself on Jurgen Klopp’s plans.
Fans will hope the pacy wide man will get a chance to build on the form that earned him an early loan recall in January on the back of some impressive performances with Wolverhampton in the Championship (combined, of course, with the desperate need for bodies amidst the Hamstring Apocalypse that had decimated the squad).
Not complaining in the slightest, Ojo went on to seize the opportunity, curling a wonderfully cheeky finish in the FA Cup against Exeter City, and skinning (former Liverpool
target reject) Xherdan Shaqiri on the way to laying an absolute peach on Daniel Sturridge for an assist on his Premier League debut.
While the arrival of Sadio Mane will surely make game time harder to come by, one must nevertheless feel good about Ojo and the proportion of academy players at Liverpool with the chance to see solid first team action this season—especially in comparison to some of the other top sides in league at the moment.
The 19-year old did have some trouble adjusting to the speed and physicality of the Premier League sides at times last season; but as yet another rising academy winger with an excellent final ball, pleasingly un-English guile and thoughtfulness in possession and the penchant for the occasional moment of pure individual class, the youngster remains a promising prospect to watch. With the Klopp at the reins, you do have to like his chances.