4 reasons why Ruben Loftus-Cheek needs to leave Chelsea this summer
After their stirring run to the semi-finals of the World Cup, many of England’s young stars have never seen their stock rise as high as it does now. And while he didn’t make as much of an impact as Harry Maguire, Kieran Trippier or Jordan Pickford, Chelsea youngster Ruben Loftus-Cheek certainly enhanced his reputation with his performances in Russia.
The question for ‘RLC’ is now simple – does he stay at Chelsea and try to break into their first team, something he’s never managed, in 2018/19? Or does he look to move – whether it’s another loan like last season’s stint at Crystal Palace, or a more permanent move?
Chelsea have suggested that Loftus-Cheek isn’t for sale, but everyone knows that player power is the biggest factor to decide moves these days. Here are 4 reasons, then, why Loftus-Cheek should look for a permanent move away from Stamford Bridge.
#1: Chelsea’s midfield is packed to the brim
After finishing in a disappointing 5th place in the Premier League in 2017/18, Chelsea last week fired manager Antonio Conte, replacing him with former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri. And immediately joining the Blues from Napoli was Italian midfielder Jorginho, signed for somewhere around £51m. Admittedly, Jorghino is a holding midfielder, but right now, any midfielder joining Chelsea acts as competition for Loftus-Cheek.
The arrival of Jorginho is another sign that Chelsea’s short-termism will continue; each new manager who arrives wishes to bring in their own personnel, meaning that players signed or developed by the previous suddenly find competition for places in the squad much harder than before. If Chelsea decides to play with Sarri’s favoured 4-3-3 formation from Napoli, then that leaves around 7 central midfielders vying for just 3 places.
With Jorginho’s fee probably cementing him as the holding midfielder, and N’Golo Kante almost impossible to drop due to his imperious form over the last two seasons, Loftus-Cheek would hypothetically be competing with Cesc Fabregas and Ross Barkley for the third spot – not impossible, but that’s, of course, assuming Sarri doesn’t bring in another central midfielder – which isn’t beyond the realm of possibility.
Essentially, with a new boss at the helm it’s hard to imagine that RLC could be considered a vital first-team player at Stamford Bridge in 2017/18 – and if that’s not the case, then he probably needs to move on.