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On paper, it always sounds like a brilliant idea. Send your talented youngsters down to the lower leagues so they can gain valuable first-team experience, rather than play relatively insignificant games with the youth teams. Simple.
But, We all know that football is not played on paper, and some of the most exciting prospects in the Premier League can be lost in the combative, physical and demanding rigors of a 46-game season in the lower leagues.
However, Harvey Elliott isn’t your average top-flight prospect, he’s a future superstar.
The 17-year-old has been terrorizing championship defenses ever since Liverpool opted to send him to Ewood Park on a one-season loan deal, and under the direction of Tony Mowbray he’s already starting to show he’s already too good for the league. England second division. .
Elliott has four goals and four assists in his 15 appearances with the Rovers, and has proven capable on both flanks, as well as being able to play centrally when called upon, an adaptability that could be key as he looks to make the move. I step up to the Premier League level.
While Adam Armstrong has rightly received endless applause for his outstanding goal scoring this campaign, the cunning, movement and creativity provided by Elliott has undoubtedly been key to the Rovers leader’s stellar campaign thus far.
Elliott’s talent and ability have never been questioned, although Liverpool’s decision to plunge him into the Championship, where he would be plying his trade against teams led by players like Neil Warnock, left some questioning as to whether he was physically up to the task. .
But if anything, the teenager has used his light build and nimble footwork to his advantage, proving too quick and smart for most championship defenders. His latest masterpiece came in Rovers’ 2-1 loss to Norwich when he completely fooled one of the best defenders in the league.
The Liverpool loan scorer picked up the ball on the right touchline and without a second thought began driving into the Canaries backline, before taunting former Premier League defender Grant Hanley as he effortlessly slid the ball down his legs and He showed the composure to fit in. fits with Michael McGovern.
It would be a mistake to completely ignore the situation Elliott finds himself in at Blackburn; Despite being a former center-back himself, Rovers boss Mowbray has struggled defensively in management, and most of the time has reverted to an enthusiastic “we’ll score more than you” approach.
Blackburn’s current squad is testament to that fact: despite being 11th in the Championship, only Bournemouth have scored more than the Lancashire-based club, but their leaky defense means they find themselves languishing in the table. average instead of fighting for an automatic promotion.
Elliott is certainly benefiting from Mowbray’s freedom, although that shouldn’t detract from the young man’s performances.
Parent club Liverpool have a big decision ahead of them in January, and Elliott has already proven himself too good for the Championship at just 17 years old.
The Reds could choose to leave him at Ewood Park, where he is evidently thriving with Mowbray, loan him to another club at a higher level and seek to accelerate his development, or there is even the option of calling him in while they look to bolster his midfield. arsenal, an option that seemed ridiculously far-fetched just four months ago.
Elliott has made possible the possibility of returning to the Premier League champions in January, and there isn’t a much bigger compliment you can pay to the electric wideman than that.
But regardless of whether he returns to Anfield in January or not, he certainly has a very important role to play at Liverpool in the future. A special talent who has proven that he has an appetite to match and will become a superstar of the game.