Robbie Keane’s retirement from international football last August left Irish fans wondering who was going to replace the prolific Tallaght man as the countries main provider of goals.
Well the answer to that question may lie close to home in the shape of another Tallaght striker, 17 year old Glen McAuley.
Last Friday, which was his 17th birthday, was a day he’ll never forget as the highly rated youngster signed a professional contract with Premier League heavyweights Liverpool.
Since joining the Reds’ academy in 2015 he has been making an excellent impression and big things are expected of him in the future.
This season he’s bagged 14 goals for the U18’s making him his sides top scorer and leading his manger Neil Critchley to heap praise on him during a chat with the clubs official website. He said:
“A young striker who is new to the U18s this season is Glen McAuley, a young lad from Dublin. As soon he walked in through the door he impressed the staff. He has impressed us with his work ethic, he has a great personality in training every day and is a really bubbly character.
“He is a real handful for defenders. He is what I would term as an old fashioned centre-forward, as he likes to run in behind defences which is a bit of a dying art now. He always puts himself in goalscoring positions and when he does that, more often than not he finishes.”
Here he is in action finishing off a fine move against Stoke a few months ago
The former Crumlin, Cherry Orchard, Kingswood and St. Joseph’s player first appeared on the radar of many Premier League scouts after an Under 12 SFAI National Cup Final between Crumlin United and St Kevin’s Boys.
A trial with Manchester United led to Sir Alex Ferguson holding personal talks with him and his family yet a move never materialised.
With United stalling then Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers successfully managed to bring him to Liverpool.
He has plenty of Irish company at Liverpool right now with fellow highly rated young compatriots Conor Masterson and Corey Whelan also making great strides in their careers.
It looks like one of them will be the first Irish player since Robbie Keane to play for the Anfield club which can only bode well for the international team as well.