Joe Cole returned to competitive action in thee Under-21 Premier League as he featured in the 3-0 victory over Fulham on Monday afternoon.

The former Chelsea midfielder returned to the club in the summer after a highly successful season-long loan with French side Lille and featured in three pre-season games for Liverpool.

Joe Cole
Cole has struggled with injuries throughout his time at Liverpool [Reuters]

Brendan Rodgers handed Cole his first competitive start for Liverpool in over a year when he was selected to play in the Europa League qualifier against FC Gomel, but a hamstring injury forced him off after just 23 minutes.

Cole was replaced by Raheem Sterling, who has made the position his own, and the 30-year-old has once again been forced to prove his fitness to Rodgers.

The decision was made for Rodolfo Borrell to select Cole in the youth side, which allows three players over the age of 21 to feature, and he soon gave Rodgers a timely reminder of his quality when he opened the scoring.

Rodgers was at the game to try and identify which players could earn a call-up to the Europa League squad for Thursday night's game against Italian side Udinese.

Cole will hope that the sixty minutes he got under his belt against Fulham will prove that he is once again ready to feature in the Liverpool first team.

Chances have been handed to numerous young players this season but the 30-year-old Cole will be hoping that he can begin to force his way back into contention.

Another player who could feature in the Europa League tie is striker Adam Morgan who found the back of the net in the 3-0 win over Fulham.

Morgan has come through the youth ranks at Liverpool and has already made his first team debut when he featured in Europe against Hearts earlier this season.

Kristjan Adorjan wrapped up the scoring on Monday with a fine strike as Liverpool remained unbeaten in the Under-21 league.