Barry’s escape raises the bar at the Villa…
Shortly after his dream goal against Liverpool, Aston Villa teenager Louis Barry let himself believe that one of the biggest shocks of the League Cup could be at stake.
Although Villa was the name of the Premier League team, the outbreak of Covid 19 at the club in the week leading up to the third round game against the Premier League champions meant that the entire team and the coach of the hosts’ first team were unavailable.
Even some U23 players couldn’t play because they were training with the older players.
So when Villa lost to Sadio Mane in the fourth minute with seven players on the U-23 side and four on the U-18 side – a total of zero first-team appearances between them – it was feared that it would become uncomfortable.
But then came Barry, a 17-year-old rookie who had recently joined Barcelona, and scored a nice goal. He came out of his own half, overcame the attention of defender Rhys Williams and took over Kaoimin Kelleher as a seasoned pro.
Liverpool won 4-1 – second half goals from Georginio Wijnaldum, Mane and Mohamed Salah ensured their progression to the top flight – but Barry will be remembered forever on Friday night.
My family is going to scream on television, said the young man who grew up in the Midlands and was stunned by the emotion when his teammates were intimidated.
I’ve been working very hard. When I was partying, everything came out of me. That was a relief.
I’ve never been so proud of a team – we’ve given everything from start to finish.
Barry’s match ended with a jersey exchange with Liverpool defender Fabinho, before he soon realised he wanted to keep his first jersey.
Fortunately, the Brazilian gave it back – allowing the teenager to keep the red top.
Asked before the important moment.
Few players leave West-Brom for Barcelona
Barry said it was his most proud moment for Villa, the club he joined last January from the 880,000 pound academy of FC Barcelona.
Barry was raised at the age of six by his rival West Bromwich Albion but declined an offer of a professional contract with the Baggies. He moved to Barcelona and spent six months there before he signed for Villa.
West Brom was entitled to compensation of £235,000, but this was not paid, although the club reported this to Fifa.
If Barry had gone directly from them to the villa, the amount of the fee would have been set by the court if there had been no agreement.
- This weekend broadcast eight matches from the third round of the FA Cup live on iPlayer, the sports website and the application. For more information, click here.
This was a considerable effort.
Villa U-23 coach Mark Delaney took the lead of Friday’s game and said Barry’s assured victory over the Reds came as no surprise to him.
We said that when Louis has a chance, he is a goalkeeper and he took it, said the former defender of the Villa.
We see him every day, but by playing on this podium against a top team, he has shown great calmness, and that promises a lot for the future.
Delaney, Barry and the rest of the team did not know they would face Liverpool on Friday, until the club’s training ground was closed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Delaney said his team did a monumental job.
He went on to say: We knew that Liverpool would have a lot of possession and the chance to admit early goals. We reacted well and stayed together. We didn’t give them too much territory.
We thought of one or two quality pieces and we could get something, and we did. Three or four passes and a nice deep ball.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said he didn’t know how to prepare for Villa after learning about their situation on Thursday.
It was a delicate matter, the German said. I’ve never known a challenge where you don’t know who you’re playing against. All our preparation for the game went in the trash and we had to start all over again.
When he saw how his team turned their dominance into a victory, Klopp said he wasn’t surprised by the young Villa’s performance.
The players at the Academy are good players, he added. We played our children here [at the Carabao Cup 2019] and they gave Villa a decent match.
If you don’t play well, you’re in trouble, but in the second half, we played the way we should have played from the start.