Why are Fulham fans booing Liverpool's Harvey Elliott?

Much like during the first leg at Anfield, Fulham fans at Craven Cottage continue to boo Liverpool's Harvey Elliott during the sides' Carabao Cup semi-final clash on Wednesday.

The boos resonating throughout the West London stadium puzzled many observers, especially neutrals. His name was booed when his place in the Reds' starting line-up was announced before the game then, during it, every touch he had was jeered too.

But why? The answer is (fairly) simple.

Elliott came through at the Fulham academy and become the youngest player in Premier League history to make an appearance at 16 years and 30 days. Therefore, it didn't take long for Elliott to attract the attention of Liverpool, who signed him on on 28 July 2019.

At this moment, Fulham had just been relegated and the Reds, who Elliott supported as a child, had just been crowned Champions of Europe.

Elliott had made just three senior appearances for the London-based club before the lure of playing for the European champions proved irresistible.

Tribunal fee

However, while few may begrudge the move, the manner in which it occurred is what irks Fulham fans.

Many perceive that the now 20-year-old abandoned them in their time of greatest need, having just fallen out of the Premier League.

Additionally, because he was only 16 at the time and not yet a professional, the transfer fee had to be settled by a tribunal.

Fulham fans argue that if the talented youngster had signed a professional contract with the Cottagers before moving to Liverpool, the club would have been entitled to a substantially higher transfer fee.

Eventually, on 10 February 2021, the Independent Professional Football Compensation Committee determined that Liverpool would pay an undisclosed amount, later confirmed by the Reds as £1.5 million, along with an additional £2.8 million in bonuses.

However, this record-breaking fee for a 16-year-old at the time did little to assuage the frustration of Fulham fans, who saw it as a small consolation for losing a promising talent.

Nearly five years later, they still won't let it go.

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