After signing a one-year loan deal at Crystal Palace earlier this week, Ruben Loftus-Cheek will travel to Hong Kong with the team on Sunday. It’s fair to say that Chelsea’s fans are fuming at the midfielder’s departure.
Whilst there are plenty of Palace fans who are reluctant to fully embrace incoming loan deals, few would argue that Loftus-Cheek’s reputation points towards him being an extremely useful tool for us this season, whereas at Chelsea, the feeling of frustration with the club’s youth policy is now reaching levels seldom seen before.
For years under the ownership of Roman Abramovic, the Blues have looked to stockpile youngsters, only to then loan them out across Europe and then sell them on at a large profit when a suitable offer comes their way. It may look fantastic on a balance sheet but to supporters, it’s a model which is actively robbing them of the opportunity to cheer on the next John Terry and regardlesss of their title win last season, it feels as though Loftus-Cheek’s move is the straw which has broken the camel’s back.
Whilst Palace have the likes of Yohan Cabaye, Luka Milivojevic, James McArthur and Jason Puncheon all ready and raring to go in the middle of the park, Loftus-Cheek’s inclusion in the 25-man squad should add a genuine goalscoring threat to the Eagles’ midfield, with his record at England U21 level highlighting his calmness when given the chance to score. Should he do well, we’ll no doubt face competition to keep him beyond the initial agreement of a year but given Chelsea’s tactics in relation to academy products in recent seasons, I would imagine anything less than a Player of the Year run of form would see them being open to selling Ruben if the price was right.
It’s always good to see a set of fans expressing anger when you take one of their players; as I’m sure you’ll agree, the reaction featured via the link at the top of the page certainly fits into that category.