There are more than a few similarities between Jack Grealish and Harvey Elliott.
English players tipped for stardom at a young age.
Natural No 10’s comfortable out wide and in a deeper midfield role.
A few minor disciplinary issues here and there.
Rather extravagant haircuts.
It is easy to see the comparison between the pair.
One thing for sure is that 2021/22 is going to be huge for both of them.
Meanwhile, Grealish could well be turning out for the Reds’ biggest title challengers.
So, both of them could well be hoping to make a major impact at the truly elite stage for the first time.
Some may find it hard to believe, but there is actually an eight-year age gap between the two players.
Considering the similarities in playing style and personality, it is no surprise that Elliott has been compared to Grealish.
Yet for us, he has the potential to overtake the Brummie in the next few years.
And why do we believe that?
Some love them, some hate them. But they certainly have their purposes.
We have decided to take a look at Elliott’s season in the Championship last campaign and compare it to Grealish’s final year in the second tier in 2018/19.
Elliott vs Grealish: the numbers
So before we start, we have a few points to note.
Grealish was 23 for the majority of the 2018/19 season. Elliott was 17 for the majority of 2020/21.
The Aston Villa man also played the majority of his football as a No 8 that season, while Elliott featured off the right flank for the most part.
Elliott also featured in 10 more games due to injuries suffered by Grealish, although they did start the same amount.
Finally, Grealish was playing in a better team. Aston Villa finished fifth and went up through the play-offs, while Blackburn came 11th.
So with that out of the way, let’s get into the numbers.
Where better to start than goals and assists?
Well, Elliott comes out on top here, by some margin. He scored seven goals and got 11 assists last campaign, while Grealish got six of each in 2018/19.
Despite playing more games, Elliott still has the higher goal and assist per 90 rate.
Grealish was a more regular shooter (2.1 shots p/90 to 1.3), although Elliott was a more accurate shooter (36% of shots on target to 32%).
The England senior international was a stronger passer too. He made more passes and key passes with a better pass success rate, although there is not a whole pile between the pair.
As expected, Grealish made more dribbles, with 1.7 per game to 0.9. Having that said, he is one of the best dribblers around, so it is no slight on Elliott.
However, the ex-Fulham man did keep the ball better. He was dispossessed just 0.6 times per game, with Grealish up at 2.2.
Finally, Grealish came out on top in the tackles (1.2 to 0.5), while Elliott made more interceptions (0.59 to 0.57).
As you can see, there is very little to split a 23-year-old Jack Grealish from a 17-year-old Harvey Elliott.
Considering this fact, where could the Liverpool wonderkid by the time he reaches 23, never mind 25 like Grealish is now?
Everyone’s development is different. But if Harvey Elliott develops at the same rate as Jack Grealish did, then Liverpool could well have a generational star on their hands.