West Ham loanee Aji Alese produced a starring performance in midweek.
Alese was the only West Ham loanee in action during the midweek round of fixtures. He played in defence for Accrington Stanley in the EFL Trophy victory over Liverpool U21s.
Despite conceding two, Alese was voted man of the match. The teenager was awarded a bottle of champagne, which he posted on social media with the caption: “Nice to get man of the match tonight.”
— Aji Alese (@AjiAlese) October 29, 2019
Accrington 5 Liverpool U21 2
Accrington produced a dominant display against a weakened Liverpool U21s side. With Jurgen Klopp eager to use a number of youngsters against Arsenal in the EFL Cup tonight, Liverpool’s U21 ranks were depleted.
Rhian Brewster, Caoimhin Kelleher, Curtis Jones, Neco Williams, Harvey Elliott and Sepp van den Berg would all usually play for this Liverpool side. But they are in the senior squad during midweek.
Liverpool U21s struggled without their regulars and Accrington picked them off with ease. Elijah Dixon-Bonner opened the scoring for the young Reds but then Accrington scored five unanswered goals.
Alese thought he had equalised but his goal was disallowed for a foul on the goalkeeper. He had another good chance but it was saved. In the end, the 18-year-old was voted man of the match for his defensive performance.
What next for Aji Alese?
Over the past few seasons, Alese has proven himself in youth team football. The England U19 starlet is confident at both club and international level for his age group and up to the U23s.
But this loan spell at Accrington is giving him his first taste of senior football. The 18-year-old has had to bide his time but he is now in the starting line-up for Stanley and John Coleman seems to trust him.
Alese has done extremely well to win the man of the match accolade against Liverpool U21s. But he needs to show this level of performance consistently against senior teams. Next up is high-flying Coventry City, who will provide Alese with a much bigger test than Liverpool’s youth team.