Noel Whelan has backed Blackburn Rovers to complete a deal to re-sign Harvey Elliott on loan from Liverpool next season.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed an excellent season since moving to Ewood Park on a short-term basis, scoring seven goals and creating 12 more for Tony Mowbray’s side.
It remains to be seen what Elliott’s plans will be for the summer, but recent reports have suggested that the young winger is looking to challenge for a spot in Jurgen Klopp’s squad next term.
Doing so could prove particularly tricky, however, with Elliott set to be challenging the likes of Mo Salah, Sadio Mane, Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino for a spot in the side.
While there’s nothing to say that Elliott couldn’t have a role to play next term, Noel Whelan has suggested that the player could benefit from another season out on loan with Blackburn Rovers the perfect place to continue his development.
Speaking to Football Insider, Whelan said: “I think he needs one more season out on loan.
“Let’s remember that he is still just 18. I think he would benefit from another season of experience at Championship level. Put it this way, it won’t do him any harm at all.
“Let’s be honest, if he stays at Liverpool next season he will not get much game time with the first team. He is not going to be commanding a starting spot ahead of a Mane, a Salah, or a Jota.
“Another season out on loan could really help his progression. It would do him the world of good.
“When he is 19, that is when he should be pushing for the first team. That is when he can really challenge for a place in that squad.
“He has had an amazing season at Blackburn. Could he return there next year? I’m sure they would like to keep him. That could be the way forward.”
Did these 19 things happen at Blackburn Rovers in 2020/21?
I’m not sure that a move to Blackburn Rovers will be the best thing for Harvey Elliott.
The 18-year-old has been really impressive this term but I think that next season is one where he will really need to kick on.
Whether that’s with Liverpool, another Premier League team or even a loan move to a Championship promotion contender – I’m not sure – but given where Blackburn are at the moment I think that he could be aiming higher.
That said, if Blackburn can convince Liverpool that they’ll be challenging for promotion then I think that it’s a move that could appeal to the player.