After a dry spell in recent weeks, Liverpool striker Danny Ings marked a return to form with an emphatic four goal performance for Neil Critchley’s U23 side against Bristol City. Yan Dhanda, Conor Masterson, and Harry Wilson also found the back of the net, contributing to a ruthless 7-0 victory for the young Reds at the Swansway Chester Stadium.
A sharp and lively Ings may yet prove to be a valuable asset for Jürgen Klopp in the coming weeks as Liverpool creep closer to an ever-congested holiday fixture schedule. Against Bristol City, Ings all but secured the victory for the U23s by the midpoint of the first half, notching his hat trick by the 21st minute with a familiar mix of hard work and opportunism that recalled his earliest performances for the Reds.
Ings opened his account just a minute after the opening whistle, latching on to a clever reverse pass from midfielder Matty Virtue. Not content to coast the opener, Ings added a second shortly thereafter following good work from Harry Wilson, and then had his third by the 21st minute cleaning up after Wilson hit the crossbar. Ings then put the result beyond doubt by setting up Dhanda for Liverpool’s fourth goal just after the half-hour mark.
With a comfortable four-goal lead at the half, the Reds could easily have taken their foot off the pedal in the second. While Bristol City did a better job of closing down their opponents following the restart, they were still unable to prevent Ings from collecting his fourth of the day with another predatory effort after Jon Flanagan’s powerful shot could only be parried away by Max O’Leary.
Bristol City did themselves no favors by having a player sent off around the 70 minute mark. Masterson took advantage of some slack defending to record Liverpool’s sixth goal in the 73rd minute, before Wilson capped his own solid performance with the final goal minutes before full time, with Ings turning provider this time. Next up for Neil Critchley’s side are Stoke City.