On return to the England under-21s after an enforced absence due to Covid, Harvey Elliott collected two assists in a 5-0 win over Kosovo.
The 19-year-old had to leave the Young Lions’ camp last week after testing positive for Covid, returning to watch the team, from the stands, on Tuesday in their 3-0 win over Albania.
And on Friday, he was back in Lee Carsley’s XI as England met Kosovo in their U21 Euro Championship qualifier, knowing they had already confirmed for the competition next summer.
While Curtis Jones was named on the bench, Elliott seized his opportunity with his start on the right of a midfield three, supplying the assist for the first and third goal of the night.
The first came after only two minutes on the edge of the area, using quick feet Elliott worked the ball onto his left foot and delivered a looped cross into the six-yard box, Hull’s Keane Lewis-Potter there to head the ball into the back of the net.
A near-identical passage of play saw Anthony Gordon etch his name on the scoresheet before Elliott then added another goal contribution to his name, this time setting up Cameron Archer in the second half to make it 3-0.
Elliott, wearing the No. 21, again showed off his nifty footwork on the edge of the area to outfox two Kosovo defenders before laying on a deft pass for Archer to finish.
The 19-year-old was then withdrawn just moments after Archer notched his second of the match to make it 4-0, with 72 valuable minutes in Elliott’s bank on return from Covid.
Minutes that manager Carsley was eager to give Elliott after the desire he showed while being forced to return to Liverpool to recover from Covid.
“He’s a player who loves playing for England, has played very well for England. He was outstanding at the last camp on and off the pitch,” Carsley said, via the Mirror.
“If you think about the journey that he’s been on this season, he’s had so many highs and lows. It would be good for him to finish on a positive note. He deserves that. He’s got an excellent attitude, works so hard and is a good guy.”
Both Elliott and Jones then watched from the bench as the Young Lions saw the scoreboard tick over to 5-0 after an own goal from Kosovo’s Ilir Krasniqi – and the duo will now hope to feature in the final game on Monday against Slovenia.