From Steven Gerrard and Michael Owen to Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman, Liverpool’s academy has produced some excellent players over the years.
However there have been plenty of youngsters coming through the Reds’ system that have been tipped for greatness, but for whatever reason never met those expectations. Here are 10 of those failed prodigies and how their career panned out since their Anfield days.
Hailing from the Republic of Ireland, Mark Kennedy was tipped to the next in a long line of Liverpool heroes from the Emerald Isle when he signed from Milwall aged 18 in 1995 for an initial £1.5 million fee (potentially rising to £2.3 million), making him then the most expensive teenage footballer in British history at the time.
The problem was, Kennedy was a winger and Reds boss Roy Evans was using wing-backs in a 3-5-2 formation, meaning the youngster was limited to just 16 league appearances in three years at Anfield.
His career then took him to Wimbledon, Manchester City (where he won promotion to the Premier League), Wolves, Crystal Palace, Cardiff and Ipswich before retirement in 2012. Kennedy did also manage to earn 34 Ireland caps.
Another Irishman, Partridge joined Liverpool in the year 2000 from Stella Maris.
He suffered many injuries during his spell at Liverpool and failed to make a Premier League appearance. However, he played in three League Cup ties for Liverpool, the first being an 8–0 demolition of Stoke City in November 2000.
After a loan spell to Bristol Rovers in 2001, Partridge joined Coventry City in 2002 and was voted fans player of the season 2003–04.
Liverpool released the player in 2005, at the end of his contract and he signed for Sheffield Wednesday. The Yorkshire club didn’t keep him on longer than a year though after a poor run of form and he left to join Rotherham United, where again he was released after one season.
Partridge dropped down the divisions and found himself ending his career with The New Saints, before coming out of retirement to represent Airbus UK Broughton in 2012.
Nowadays, Richie is back at Liverpool where he works as a Physiotherapist, a career he qualified for in 2009. In the summer of 2016, Partridge moved from the Anfield club’s Academy set-up to Melwood, to work with the first team.