Reports coming from The Sun this afternoon have claimed that young Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek could become Frank de Boer’s first arrival at Selhurst Park since taking over last month.
The Dutchman was announced as Sam Allardyce’s successor in late June on a three-year deal and it seems that Chelsea’s 21-year-old prodigy will become his first signing, with a medical due to happen.
It is understood that Loftus-Cheek will join up with Crystal Palace on a season-long loan as boss Antonio Conte wants him to gain more first-team experience to stand him in good stead at Chelsea.
What can Loftus-Cheek bring to Selhurst Park?
Since joining Chelsea at just eight-years-old it’s fair to say that Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been in the perfect place to develop his raw potential, working his way through the ranks up into the first-team.
Making his debut in 2014, the 21-year-old has made 22 appearances for Chelsea across three Premier League seasons, keeping himself on the periphery of the Blues’ squad.[interaction id=”59638befd6d87f2d0f19ee2e”]
Add to this his wealth of experience playing for England’s youth sides – most recently featuring prominently for the Under-21s – and Palace have really secured one of the coups of the summer.
Tall in frame and slender in physique Loftus-Cheek has shown his talent with the ball at his feet, willing to drive from the heart of midfield and join in with play in the attacking third when possible.
He likes to get himself involved in play on the edge of the area, always looking to shift a yard of space and get a shot away, and seven goals for England’s Under-21s shows that he knows where the goal is.
Defensively he’s come on strong under the management of both Jose Mourinho and current boss Antonio Conte too, learning when to dive in and when to hold the opposition up; there’s little surprise that he’s been likened to Yaya Toure in the past with his powerful style of play and dominant figure in the middle.
With Chelsea edging closer to the signing of Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko – as per ESPN sources – it’s a wise move for Loftus-Cheek to take a year out and prove himself in the top-flight.