A BANGOR teenager overcame a career-threatening injury to make his “dream” debut for Liverpool FC last week.
Jordan Williams, aged 18, made his first appearance for the Premier League giants when he came on as a 79th minute substitute during a post-season friendly against Shamrock Rovers in front of a 42,000-strong crowd at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin last Wednesday.
After being allocated the number 42 shirt for the team, his 11 minute cameo capped a remarkable turnaround for the former Ysgol y Garnedd pupil.
Last year, Jordan was told by doctors after battling a complicated knee injury for almost a year, that we would have to hang up his boots if he had to undergo another operation.
Jordan said: “A year ago I would never have thought I would be in this position at the end of the season making my first team debut.
“It was a very tough time for me mentally.
"But hopefully that's behind me now and I can push on, and hopefully get another chance if I keep on working hard.”
Jordan’s sister, Lucy said: “They didn’t know if he was going to need an operation on his knee and the surgeon told him if he needed another operation, he could never play football again because it wasn’t healing.
“He went through rehab with Liverpool and it was like a miracle that he was back with them in a few months.
“He’s been playing football since he was six, dreaming about this moment all his life and now it’s actually happened.”
Jordan added: “It was an unbelievable feeling to make my debut in front of 42,000 people, and to be around some first team players. Putting the shirt on with your name on it is a very proud moment, not just for me but for my family as well.
“The atmosphere was something that I've never experienced, considering it was a friendly it was still very loud. Brendan Rodgers just said for me to enjoy it when I was ready to come on.”
Since joining Penrhosgarnedd Juniors FC at the age of six, Jordan played for Bangor City and Wrexham before being signed by Liverpool at the age of 14.
He moved to the city at 16, and last month he turned professional after signing his first two year contract.
Mr Eifion Williams, Jordan’s former head teacher at Ysgol y Garnedd, added: “What’s good about Jordan, not only are his feet good, but his head is good.
“They are a very close family, they’ve given him great support from the start and I don’t think without that support, he would be where he is now.”