Why Chelsea shouldn’t let go of Ruben Loftus-Cheek amidst interests
According to a report in Daily Star (h/t Tuttosport), Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek is wanted by Italian club AC Milan when the January window opens. The Serie A side are also interested in another Blues midfielder Cesc Fabregas, whose contract runs out at the end of this season.
Loftus-Cheek has struggled to get regular game time on the pitch and new manager Maurizio Sarri is content with giving the young Englishman the chances to shine in the cup games.
However, despite not being able to break into the starting line-up for the league games, the 22-year-old has been doing well whenever the opportunities have arrived.
Here’s why Chelsea should keep hold of the midfielder amidst strong interest from AC Milan:
Ruben Loftus-Cheek is the future of the club
As mentioned above, Sarri hasn’t yet used Loftus-Cheek regularly in the league games. The Englishman has started only one Premier League match this season and has came off the bench on five occasions. In that short window of opportunity, the midfielder has scored three goals and been a game changer with his direct approach on and off the ball in the final third.
If we look at the Chelsea squad, central midfield is where they can be short if the 22-year-old leaves the club. Cesc Fabregas is way past his prime, while Mateo Kovacic is a loanee from Real Madrid and he would go back to the Spanish capital once the season gets over.
Hence, they would be left with N’Golo Kante and Ross Barkley as the assets who can play that number eight role. So, it is imperative from the club’s viewpoint that they keep hold of their academy product.
Moreover, Loftus-Cheek is a quality player who has come leaps and bounds in the past year or so. He is a physically dominant midfielder who possesses a great turn of pace on the ball to burst past opposition players in tight areas. The 22-year-old can score goals, create chances and cover the ground well without possession.
Chelsea are challenging for a Champions League spot this season and would look to be title contenders next campaign. Their aim has to be to keep hold of their core players and build a team that can be strong on all fronts. And Loftus-Cheek should be a part of the nucleus.