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Jokanovic introduced 15yo Harvey Elliott at Millwall

last updated Wednesday 26th September 2018, 4:41 PM

Fulham Football Club

Fulham midfielder Harvey Elliott
Fulham midfielder
Harvey Elliott
Harvey Elliott
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It was a measure of Fulham’s comfort that with nine minutes remaining of Tuesday night’s EFL Cup third-round tie Slavisa Jokanovic felt sufficiently confident to make a little bit of history.

With his side cruising to a 3-1 win at Millwall, Jokanovic introduced Harvey Elliott, aged 15 years and 174 days, to become the youngest player to represent the club.

The midfielder has already caught the eye of Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City and he cannot formally discuss a Fulham scholarship deal until January, nor commit to professional terms until he is 17 — potentially opening the door for other clubs.

“He’s special. A quality player and a special kid,” said Fulham team-mate Floyd Ayite, one of 10 changes from the 1-1 draw at Watford last weekend.

“He’s quiet. He’s had to learn quick and I think his future is going to be bright. He was looking around the [dressing] room and the pitch, learning from us. He has a good mentality and is going to go far.”

Elliott was back at Coombe School, bordering Fulham’s Motspur Park training ground, this morning, having had tests yesterday before finishing the day being examined on the pitch.

He has been given permission to train with the first team once a week, although he remains too young to get changed in front of his team-mates.

“He is arrogant in a positive way,” said Jokanovic, who plans to use Elliott in cup competitions in the hope of persuading him to stay at the club.

“This kid shows the personality. He says, ‘I want to show you I am a very good player.’ I say, ‘Okay, if you can show me, I’ll give you this opportunity’.

“A huge gap is ahead of him for improvement and to grow up and to be part of this profession.”

Newly-promoted Fulham have spent more than £100million since their last visit to The Den in April — a 3-0 win which ended Millwall’s 17-game unbeaten run — but Elliott is the latest product of one of the country’s most impressive academies.

A more advanced graduate, 20-year-old Luca de la Torre, set Fulham on the way to victory after seven minutes with a cute assist for Joe Bryan’s first goal for the club, before doubling their lead at the start of the second half with a low finish.

Millwall halved the deficit on the hour through Tom Elliott’s towering header but Cyrus Christie made sure of Fulham’s progress with a stunning goal from 25 yards.

Fuham’s Elliott is preparing for his GCSEs but, by the time he was introduced last night, the game had developed into little more than a mock exam.

Source Dan Kilpatrick at Evening Standard
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