Nick Liversedge can go on to great things, writes Whitby Town fan Paul Connolly.
News has emerged from Whitby Town that their 24-year-old goalkeeper Nick Liversedge is joining Burnley. The news is yet to be confirmed, but Paul Connolly, Blue Army Fanzine editor, Whitby Town’s only fanzine, fills us in on the new arrival.
When the news broke of Nick Liversedge’s departure for Burnley for Whitby Town, I was both gutted and proud. Gutted that we’d lost a first-rate goalkeeper (Although we’ve been expecting it for some time!), but proud of him for finally realising his dream of playing league football. He is a firm favourite with the fans at Whitby and he will be missed by all at the club.
Nick started his career in the centre of excellence at Rotherham United, before joining Darlington in 2007, where he went on to make his senior debut. Following his debut, he made 15 appearances for the Quakers before being released, following their relegation from League Two.
The first look I got at Liversedge was in the 2008/2009 season, when he spent the year on loan at Whitby Town. Back then I wasn’t overly sure on him. He looked erratic and nervous, but since then, he has had two further spells with the club and he has improved massively in each spell.
Liversedge is now a confident, calm and assured goalkeeper. Since that first spell, he has continuously gone away and strived to improve and he has finally been rewarded for all of his hard work. This season has been his best yet and there has been a lot of interest from Championship clubs over the course of the season.
Nick has a lot of strong attributes about his game and once he has played a few games, I think that it will become obvious as to why the club have signed him. The best attribute he has, I feel, is his shot stopping, especially one-on-one. He has won Whitby games this season with his shot stopping. He has also got us out of a few sticky situations. He tends to be quite rapid off his line too. This gives him a massive advantage against strikers when in a one-on-one situation. His agility also helps him a lot. You wouldn’t expect many to make some of the saves that Nick makes. He will get to a shot that some may not, and even if he doesn’t quite reach it, he will give it a good go. You will see the determination from him to do well with every shot he saves, because he tries his absolute hardest to get to everything. Another thing that he is good at is penalty saving. His record with spot-kicks is excellent.
Standing at 6ft 4″, Nick towers over many, and he uses his height to full advantage. He always commands his area well. His defenders will be left in no doubt about what to do, leading to him not making many mistakes. This assured stance also bodes well when the ball comes into the box from wide. It’s rare that Nick makes the wrong choice when the ball is crossed in, so I can’t see many issues cropping up there. His handling is good too, another key aspect of his play, and arguably one of the most important talents needed by a goalkeeper.
One game in particular that stands out for me is the 7-0 hammering we took at Guiseley this season. I know for a fact that the scoreline has worried you, but never fear. Nick came out of this game with the man of the match award and in all fairness, he was Whitby’s best player on the day. He made some top drawer saves and he wasn’t at fault for any one of the goals. How often can you say that your goalkeeper was man of the match in a 7-0 hammering?!
One thing I will say though is that he still needs to do a bit of work on his kicking. From goal-kicks it can sometimes be quite wayward. It has certainly improved recently, but I think it’s one to keep an eye on.
Personally, I think Nick can go on to great things. He has fantastic desire to do well and he will prove himself when given the chance. He is a genuine, hard-working lad too, which will take him far. One thing I will say is, don’t write him off. Even if he isn’t brilliant in his first few games. He will improve and he is a fantastic goalkeeper. If given the chance, he will work his hardest to take it. If anybody deserves another crack at the Football League, it’s Nick.
UPDATE: The Evo-Stik league website is reporting that Liversedge played for a Burnley side in a 3-1 behind-closed-doors win over Tranmere last week.
UPDATE: Liversedge played in a reserve game for Burnley against Tranmere last year.
What do you make of the signing of Nick Liversedge?