Football

Hamstrung Ox Pulls Up On Return For Liverpool U23s

Hamstrung Ox Pulls Up On Return For Liverpool U23s

Eleven months on from being stretchered off under the Anfield lights, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was able to pull on a Liverpool shirt this afternoon, but things quickly turned sour.

It had been expected that after suffering a serious knee ligament injury in last year's UEFA Champions League semi-final win over Roma, the England international would be set to miss all of the 2018-19 campaign for the Reds - a blow for Jurgen Klopp's side after some talismanic performances in the midfield after sealing a switch to Merseyside from Arsenal last January.

Excitement had been building amongst fans that The Ox would, in fact, return for the end straight of Liverpool's Premier League title tilt, having been spotted dipping in and out of first team-training in recent weeks.

And when the 25-year-old was named in the starting eleven for this afternoon's Premier League 2 clash with Derby County, that excitement turned to unbridled joy.

However, things didn't go exactly to plan.

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Oxlade-Chamberlain lasted only 41 minutes on his return to action, having been seen grabbing the back of his right leg late in the first half. Replaced by Wales' Isaac Christie-Davies, the midfielder did at least offer some consolation to worried onlookers after offering a thumbs up on his way to the dressing room.

Liverpool fans will be hoping that his withdrawal was only precautionary.

The Neil Critchley managed Reds stormed to an impressive 3-1 victory to move into 4th place behind their opponents after a brace from tashe-tastic Curtis Jones sandwiched a Rafael Camacho effort.

Derby scored a consolation late-on as recent call-up to Mick McCarthy's Irish squad, Caoimhín Kelleher, dropped a cross into his own net.

There were also appearances for Conor Masterson and Corey Whelan from the Liverpool bench.

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Aaron Strain

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