Local(ish) lad Jay Spearing was handed his first full Liverpool start on Tuesday night, partnering Javier Mascherano in arguably the smallest Liverpool central midfield pairing in our clubs history (Answers on a postcard please)
The 20 year old had been left in the stands for most of the reds reserves games this season, and questions were starting to be asked about the player’s future – although he has occupied a place on Liverpool’s first team bench on a couple of occasions.
With an improving Lucas Leiva, and the arrival of Alberto Aquilani, the chances of Spearing breaking through appear more difficult but after a memorable substitute appearance in Liverpool’s 4-0 demolition of Real Madrid last season – Liverpool fans will have been pleased to see him getting some more match time under Benitez.
Jay said of his full debut:
“I felt I did all right and hopefully I’ve proved to the boss and the supporters that I can do it for the first team.
“It was a very special night for me to make my first start for the club. And to play the full 90 minutes was fantastic.
“We trained in the formation we used on the night on Monday so I thought I might have a chance of starting, and then when we got to the hotel the boss told me I was playing.
“It has been a long time coming waiting for my first start but I’ve had to keep grafting hard and wait for my chance. I knew it was going to come soon and thankfully we got the result we needed.”
Ironically a potential FA suspension to Javier Mascherano would have assisted Jay, but last night the FA rightly announced that following delivery of the referee’s match report no action would be taken against the Argentine.