The one stunning moment that proved Ruben Loftus-Cheek can be a force under Maurizio Sarri

It was a sight that Chelsea fans had been hoping to see for quite some time as finally Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first competitive start for the Blues since January 2017.

The appearance might have come sooner for the 22-year-old had he not picked up an injury, but the fact that he had to wait until a Europa League match against MOL Vidi might be something of a worry for the Englishman.

Loftus-Cheek lasted just 66 minutes in the game at Stamford Bridge before finally being replaced by Ross Barkley, not getting the full 90 minutes under his belt that he would no doubt have craved.

While Mateo Kovacic and Barkley appear to be above the former Blues academy player in the pecking order for the third midfield spot, there was one particular flash of brilliance that proved Loftus-Cheek can be a force for Sarri’s Chelsea.

Loftus-Cheek started on the right of the midfield three, a position that N’Golo Kante has been occupying in the Premier League, and showed great strength both off the ball and on it, and good tactical awareness.

But it was in the 39th minute of the game that Loftus-Cheek showed why there is so much buzz about him from a young age and proved why he should be a useful member of the squad.

Picking up the ball in the Vidi half, Loftus-Cheek showed amazing pace and power to burst his way into the box, beating a couple of defenders along the way with none of them able to stop him.

Eventually, Paulo Vinicius brought down the England international in what looked like a stonewall penalty, but somehow referee Miloslav Zelinka didn’t point to the spot, while the official behind the goal remained motionless.

Chelsea were incensed, and rightly so, while Loftus-Cheek was robbed of the chance of creating a massive chance for his team in what should have been given.

Loftus-Cheek might well struggle for game time in the Premier League and may find himself on the bench against Southampton on Sunday, or worse out of the matchday squad.

But those flashes of brilliance prove why he can be a really useful impact player for Sarri as his squad continues to develop.

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