The news Harvey Elliott‘s successful surgery was met with support from throughout football, including a young striker linked with a move to Liverpool in Karim Adeyemi.
There are few youngsters in Europe enjoying as swift a rise to prominence as Elliott, whose ankle injury at Elland Road has curtailed an impressive run of form for Liverpool.
His third consecutive start in Jurgen Klopp‘s midfield came on the back of an international break spent with the England under-21s, having earned his first call-up to Lee Carsley’s squad at just 18.
But certainly running him close is Salzburg striker Adeyemi, who has taken up a first-choice role upon Patson Daka’s move to Leicester, scoring seven goals in 11 games so far this season as well as netting on his senior debut for Germany.
The 19-year-old met Elliott on the pitch in the UEFA Youth League clashes in 2019, and was on hand to give his Liverpool counterpart a message of support following his surgery on Tuesday.
Elliott took to Instagram to provide an update on his successful operation, with Adeyemi responding to tell him: “Get well soon bro.”
It is no indication of an imminent move to Liverpool, of course, though fans have also spotted how the Salzburg teenager has ‘liked’ an article discussing the prospect of him joining the Reds on Twitter.
German publication BILD have credited Klopp’s side with an interest in Adeyemi, with Transfermarkt claiming that Liverpool and Barcelona are both “preparing an offer for the upcoming winter.”
Bayern Munich and Dortmund are also reported to be scouting the youngster, with a price tag of £25.6 million mooted if he is to leave Austria.
Liverpool have put a strong emphasis on youth in the transfer market of late, with the signings of Kaide Gordon, Mateusz Musialowski, Marcelo Pitaluga and Bobby Clark among those sanctioned with the long-term future in mind.
Adeyemi could, in theory, follow that trend, as part of the Red Bull production line that has also included Sadio Mane, Naby Keita, Takumi Minamino and Ibrahima Konate.
Earlier on Tuesday night, Adeyemi started for Salzburg in their Champions League opener against Sevilla, and remarkably he won three penalties in the space of 25 first-half minutes.
The striker’s speed and daring saw him win the ball ahead of Diego Carlos and Bono respectively, while a push from Jesus Navas saw him awarded another.
Having missed the first of the spot-kicks himself, Adeyemi ceded duties to Luka Sucic, who scored his first and hit the post with his second as Salzburg eventually drew 1-1 at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
With Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane due to head to the Africa Cup of Nations in January, it would be a big ask for Adeyemi to come in and immediately take up a starting role at Liverpool – but his arrival could serve as a solution for both the short and long term.