Ruben Loftus-Cheek seeks to 'kick on' with Chelsea
Ruben Loftus-Cheek hoping to ‘kick on’ with Chelsea after earning the trust of manager Thomas Tuchel… midfielder wants to stay despite interest from Roma, Everton, Crystal Palace and West Ham
- Midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek is planning to stay at Chelsea next season
- He scored in Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final victory against Crystal Palace
- The 26-year-old also played against Real Madrid in the Champions League
Ruben Loftus-Cheek is planning to stay at Chelsea next season and hoping to ‘kick on’ and feature more often after regaining confidence in his body and earning the trust of his Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel.
That will not be the news clubs who have been monitoring Loftus-Cheek’s situation and keen to offer him more regular football would want to hear.
A number of sides including Jose Mourinho’s Roma, Everton and West Ham have weighed up moves for midfielder Loftus-Cheek in recent months.
Midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek (above) is planning to stay at Chelsea next season
And following Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final victory against Crystal Palace, in which Loftus-Cheek scored Chelsea’s deadlock breaking opener, Eagles chairman Steve Parish confirmed they will try and re-sign Conor Gallagher from the Stamford Bridge club but also floated the idea of another move for Loftus-Cheek.
Parish said: ‘I’m sure at the end of the season, Conor will work out what he thinks the best thing for him is and that will that will be the catalyst for it.
‘Once we get to the season, we’ll worry about all that and obviously if there’s an opportunity to get him or Loftus-Cheek who scored the first goal then of course.’
Loftus-Cheek has already enjoyed a season-long loan spell at Selhurst Park, a campaign in which he played regularly in the Premier League and his form led to him being called up to England’s 2018 World Cup squad.
The 26-year-old wants to feature more often after regaining confidence in his mind and body
His following season was ended by a serious Achilles injury that kept him out for over a year, one of a number of setbacks that have stalled his progress.
Tuchel explained how the stop-start nature of his career has affected the 26 year-old’s confidence in his body and Loftus-Cheek said: ‘He’s right, it’s hard when you haven’t played for a while.
‘It’s hard to have the confidence to come back and just hit the ground running. It’s not easy, especially after that injury. My game was power and you lose power.
‘Confidence comes from playing a lot, being exposed to it every week. You get confidence and it becomes second nature to do things you do on the pitch. If you don’t have confidence you second-guess yourself and it becomes a lot of over-thinking on the pitch. That’s what I’ve had for a lot of my career. I haven’t been confident in myself because of my body and not playing a lot so it’s hard to then just come in and dazzle. That’s the fight I’ve had all my life.
Loftus-Cheek wants to ‘kick on’ after earning the trust of Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel
‘I feel like when I’ve had a consistent amount of games I’ve flourished. Like the Palace season and with Maurizio Sarri. I feel like the manager trusts me which gives me a lot of confidence, playing me against Real Madrid [in the Champions League last week] and bringing me on in the semi-final. That says a lot. I’m grateful to be in this position. Now we have to kick on.’
An in-form and consistently-playing Loftus-Cheek would surely quickly come back into England manager Gareth Southgate’s thoughts and the delayed World Cup in Qatar this year could work in his favour.
Loftus-Cheek said: ‘I’ve always believed I’m good enough to play for England. It’s just been that I’ve had to not think about it for a while. Just purely because I didn’t feel ready.
‘I didn’t feel my best, didn’t feel confident in my body. Now I can say my body doesn’t go through my mind. I feel fit. I feel strong. I feel quick. And on the ball, I’ve never second-guessed that.
‘I just want to kick on but I have to take it day by day, game by game. Okay, it’s in the back or your head but it’s not the main focus.’
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