Reds set to call up new boy

August 14, 1970
John McLaughlin, Liverpool’s 18-years-old midfield protégé from Kirkby, is all set to be plunged into the new season at the deep end at Burnley to-morrow. McLaughlin, scarcely in the reckoning for a place last week, has leaped to the front in practice matches this week and manager Bill Shankly is ready to gamble on the youngster.

McLaughlin has only played one previous game for Liverpool’s first team, the last match of last season at Chelsea where he gave a good account of himself. Shanks has spent the summer building up McLaughlin by putting him on a special steak diet with a view to introducing him later in the season.

But such are the problems Liverpool have encountered in their midfield formations as they have prepared for the new season that Shankly is prepared to gamble on the teenager. McLaughlin was included in a squad of 13 which Shankly named to-day to make the trip to Turf Moor.

Also in the party was Ian Ross who is expected to turn out at full back where he did well in the friendly at Middlesbrough last week. Club captain Ron Yeats has found adapting from centre half to left back too much of an obstacle and plays in the reserves. Tommy Smith takes over the captaincy.

Liverpool: Ray Clemence, Chris Lawler, Ian Ross, Tommy Smith, Larry Lloyd, Emlyn Hughes, Ian Callaghan, Alun Evans, Bobby Graham, John McLaughlin, Peter Thompson. Substitute: Jack Whitham or Steve Heighway.

Burnley: Tony Waiters, John Angus, Les Latcham, Arthur Bellamy, Colin Waldron, Jim Thomson, Dave Thomas, Ralph Coates, Geoff Nulty, Doug Collins, Steve Kindon. Substitute: Dave Merrington.
(Source: Liverpool Echo: August 14, 1970; via © 2018 Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited

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