Aston Villa vs Liverpool: Louie Barry astonishingly equalises for Villa in FA Cup mismatch

  • Kobe Tong

Aston Villa vs Liverpool was always going to be a game for the history books.

The COVID-19 pandemic has already presented a series of unique challenges to English football over the last 12 months and positive cases have rapidly increased with the arrival of 2021.

But few scenarios have been quite as bizarre as Villa taking to the pitch for their FA Cup third-round tie against the Premier League champions with a team entirely comprised of youth players.

Aston Villa vs Liverpool

Ok, yes, the reverse scenario took place at the back end of 2019 in the Carabao Cup, but that was due to Liverpool's fixture congestion as opposed to an outbreak of COVID-19 in the Villa first-team.

As a result, the Villans were forced to field a starting XI that included seven players from the U23 squad, four U18 players and Mark Delaney in the dugout as opposed to Dean Smith. 

Liverpool, on the other hand, showed no signs of taking their foot off the gas with Jurgen Klopp deploying the likes of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah in a surprisingly-strong selection.


Villa's youth team equalise

Consequently, there was little to no surprise when Liverpool took the lead within three minutes as Mane headed the ball home from a perfectly-placed pass.

At that point, you'd be forgiven for thinking Liverpool would pull into a 3-0 or 4-0 lead before half-time, but Villa's youthful side started to hold their own with some heroic defending.

And remarkably, Villa managed to draw level with Louie Barry latching onto a defensive error from the 2019 Champions League winners to astonishingly move to 1-1 before half-time.

You love to see it. Who says the magic of the FA Cup doesn't exist?

Incredible moment for Villa

It was an incredibly composed finish from the 17-year-old who might be familiar to some readers for having swapped the West Bromwich Albion academy for Barcelona in 2019.

And although things didn't work out for Barry at Camp Nou, it's fair to say that will be the last thing on his mind after scoring a historic goal against one of the Premier League's greatest ever teams.

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