So far, the 2017/18 Premier League season has been a dreadful one for supporters of Crystal Palace FC but we have had one particular bright spot in the shape of Chelsea loanee Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
As you can see from the video attached just below, Ruben has arrived in SE25 looking like a man with a real point to prove having never quite made his mark in the Blues first-team. Unlike so many of his contemporaries, Loftus-Cheek has never been sent out on loan before; after just a few weeks in Palace colours, it’s easy to see why.
Despite his sizeable frame, Ruben moves with a real sense of grace whether in or out of possession. Instantly recogniseable as a player who operates with his head up at all times, he has brought a real dynamism to the Palace midfield whilst also transmitting a feeling of calm whenever he has the ball at his feet.
Clearly, he’s a man with all the skills necessary to go to the very top of the game and whilst I’d love to think we could keep hold of him beyond the terms of his season-long loan from Stamford Bridge, it’s difficult to imagine them not wanting him back if he continues to perform at the same high standard between now and May.
A regular starter for the England U21s, I have no doubt that he’ll be making regular appearances in the senior Three Lions squad before long, given the strength he’s brought to the Palace midfield already. Given the dismal results we’ve managed so far, it’s all the more credit to him and Manchester United loanee Timothy Fosu-Mensah that they’ve been standout performers regardless of general dreary tone of our play.
Used as both an attacking midfielder in the wide prong of a 3-4-3 and a deeper lying, more conventional central midfielder, Ruben has proven himself to be capable of adapting to either role without any fuss. Sadly, he missed Palace’s last league game (a 1-0 home defeat to Swansea) but he is expected to return to the fold when we travel to face Burnley this weekend.
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