Chelsea’s one of the most promising adacemy product Ruben Loftus-Cheek has opened up about his current situation with the club and loan move to Crystal Palace this summer.
The 21-year-old midfielder was sent on his first loan spell away from Stamford Bridge this summer, as he needed to get more regular playing time in order to keep up his development. He eventually made just six appearances in the Premier League last season.
Loftus-Cheek has already started in four of Palace’s six league games, being tipped as one of the best players in the side so far eventhough the team is yet to win a game.
Now the England U21 international has opened up about his current situation with the Blues. With the manager Antonio Conte giving him no assurances ahead of next season’s team selection, it has left the player quite uncertain of his future.
“Did Conte promise me a chance next season? Not at all. But I don’t think it’s right to because you never know how I’ll preform this season. So, right now I’m just literally focused on Palace.
He [Conte] said I need to play games. Chelsea is a big club and there’s a lot of pressure which I understand.
For me, I think it was the right time for me to go away from Chelsea right now and get my game time elsewhere.”
– Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Daily Star
Chelsea also let go of another academy graduate this summer – Nathaniel Chalobah – as the Englishman got tired of waiting for his chance at the Bridge. He moved to Watford on a permanent transfer, which only fuels the speculation of Loftus-Cheek also facing the same destiny.
Courtois discusses emotional return to Atletico Madrid
Thibaut Courtois is confident that Chelsea are coming into form at just the right time as they prepare to face Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday, as reported by The Guardian.
Following a shock defeat at home to Burnley on the opening day of the Premier League season, the Blues have won six of their past seven games in all competitions.
A hat-trick from Álvaro Morata led them to a comfortable 4-0 win over Stoke this Saturday, and Courtois believes the result bodes well for the future:
“Stoke away is a hard game and last year we only won in the last minutes. This year Arsenal lost here. United struggled at 2-2, so to win by four is pleasing.”
Chelsea now face a tough week, with an away match against Atletico followed by a visit from the league leaders Manchester City at Stamford Bridge:
“It will be interesting for us. We have started this difficult week well with a good victory against Stoke and hopefully Wednesday and Saturday we will carry this good form on. The top teams are doing well this season and we are happy to be close to the top. If we want to close that gap we need to try and win next week.”
Courtois is looking forward to returning to Atletico, a club where he spent three seasons on loan between 2011 and 2014. He has fond memories of his time in Madrid, which included a La Liga title win and an appearance in the Champions League final.
However, he will be returning to an unfamiliar stadium as Atletico have moved into their new home, the 68,000 seater Wanda Metropolitano:
“I remember being at the presentation of the new stadium when they first revealed it. I went there to see the place when there was only one stand – the old one – and they were doing the groundwork. It will be nice to see it.
Atletico christened the stadium with a tight 1-0 victory over Malaga nine days ago courtesy of an Antoine Griezmann goal. Their new home is an impressive one, but time will tell if it can match the ferocious atmosphere generated in their old home the Vicente Calderón.”
Diego Costa’s return to Atletico Madrid gives the match a fascinating sub-plot, but the ex-Chelsea striker will not be eligible for this week’s game due to the La Liga side’s ban on registering new players before January.