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Fulham midfielder Luke Harris on verge of surprise Wales call-up
The 17-year-old made his Cottagers first-team debut in the Carabao Cup last week.
Fulham teenager Luke Harris is on the verge of a shock Wales call-up that could take him all the way to the World Cup in Qatar.
Harris has been on the Fulham bench for three of their four Premier League games this season and made his debut in the Carabao Cup at Crawley.
The 17-year-old attacking midfielder has developed rapidly at Craven Cottage, with an 11-minute hat-trick against Newcastle among his 13 goals in 17 league appearances for Fulham Under-23s last season.
Earlier this month Harris hit a Premier League 2 hat-trick against a Chelsea side featuring Ben Chilwell, Ethan Ampadu and Trevoh Chalobah.
Wales play Nations League games against Belgium and Poland next month, and Harris is a strong contender to replace his injured Fulham team-mate Harry Wilson in Robert Page’s squad.
Page said: “We’ve been to watch his games and he’s doing really well.
“He’s an absolute talent. I’ve met with him and the family and he’s a great kid as well.
“He’s got a bright future in front of him, so we’ll be in dialogue.
“There’s bit of time between now and then (the Nations League squad being named), so we’ll have to wait and see what happens.”
Jersey-born Harris also qualifies for England. But he has been capped by Wales at various youth levels and scored against England in an U18s 1-1 draw at Newport last September.
Wales are confident that Harris will commit to them at senior level, and FIFA’s decision to approve bigger 26-man squads for Qatar could hand him a World Cup passport.
We've been to watch his games and he's doing really well. He's an absolute talent
- Wales manager Robert Page on Luke Harris
Page used enlarged 26-man squads at Euro 2020 to call up Cardiff forward Rubin Colwill for the first time.
Colwill, 19 at the time, had started only three Championship games for Cardiff before making his international debut.
“I don’t think there’s going to be too many surprises in the (World Cup) squad,” said Page, speaking to the PA news agency while on behalf of M&S Food’s Eat Well, Play Well campaign.
“I am a loyal person and if someone’s done all right for me I’ll show that back.
“Thankfully we’ve got 26 instead of 23, and that gives me an opportunity to take a couple of extra players like we did in the Euros.
“We’ve got a couple that I might introduce in September and let’s see how that goes.
“If people grasp an opportunity with both hands and, we like what we see, then they haven’t done themselves any harm.
“They might open my eyes to potentially taking them to Qatar.”