AFTER A RELATIVELY SUCCESSFUL LOAN SPELL AT SELHURST PARK, CRYSTAL PALACE ARE INTERESTED IN SIGNING CHELSEA LOANEE RUBEN LOFTUS-CHEEK IN A PERMANENT DEAL.
Roy Hodgson, who took over as Crystal Palace manager in September, has declared an interest in permanently signing the England international in the summer if the opportunity presents itself.
As reported by Sky Sports, Hodgson said:
“He’s a fantastic player and of course we’d love to keep him. We’d love to bring him back but the bottom line is he was loaned to us for a season. At the end of the season, the plan from Chelsea was that he would go back to them so I guess we’ll have to wait and see what their thinking is.
“If they make him available in any way then, of course, we’ll be right there trying to get to the front of the queue with our hands up but it’s totally out of our hands. Chelsea will decide.”
Despite an ankle injury that kept him out for three months, Loftus-Cheek has impressed for the Eagles and in November he earned his first senior England caps (against Germany and Brazil) as a result. In the goalless draw against world champions Germany, he put in a man-of-the-match display.
With Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain ruled out for the World Cup, Loftus-Cheek is playing himself into contention to replace the Liverpool midfielder in England’s World Cup squad.
The 22-year-old has made 23 Premier League appearances so far this season – more than he managed in his previous three campaigns with Chelsea combined. He has scored two goals for Palace this season as well as providing three assists.
Loftus-Cheek has been with Chelsea since the Under-8s age group and is highly rated but it remains to be seen whether they will let another one of their talented youngsters leave in the summer. Nathan Ake and Nathaniel Chalobah are just two players who have moved on from Stamford Bridge after finding first-team opportunities hard to come by.
If Loftus-Cheek wants to continue developing and playing regular football, a return to Selhurst Park beyond this season could prove hugely beneficial.