Chelsea ace Ruben Loftus-Cheek sends tactical message to Frank Lampard
Ruben Loftus-Cheek believes he will be most effective for new Chelsea boss Frank Lampard as a box-to-box midfielder.
Lampard has been unable to turn to Loftus-Cheek since returning to Stamford Bridge as head coach in the summer.
The England international, 23, ruptured his Achilles tendon during Chelsea’s end-of-season friendly against New England Revolution in May, meaning he has had to sit back and watch the club’s homegrown stars shine under Lampard early on this term.
Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori have all become key players for the Blues in 2019/20, with the former netting nine goals in his first 10 Premier League outings.
But Loftus-Cheek is adamant he also has a significant role to play in west London, insisting he can excel in the type of position Lampard did as a Blues player.
“I’m most effective as a box-to-box midfielder. Getting up and down, creating and also defending,” he told Versus.
“I’ve played in a number of positions because I’m versatile so it’s easy for managers to move me around.
“I played left and right midfield at [Crystal] Palace but I managed to do well.
“That’s cool when you’re coming up but as I’m maturing I kinda want to nail down one position and hopefully that position is box to box.”
Loftus-Cheek’s injury came at the most frustrating of times, having finally become a regular started under Lampard’s predecessor Maurizio Sarri.
He made 40 appearances for Chelsea last season, which is more than he had made in each of his three full campaigns at the club combined.
The Blues academy graduate says he is close to a return, nevertheless, and excited to get going under Lampard.
Speaking about his rehabilitation, Loftus-Cheek said: “It’s going well!
“It’s been a long time and I’ve had a few setbacks as well.
“It’s never been just a straight path but I’m close now…I’ve been running and moving, I feel I’m right on the edge.
“I’m close and I can’t wait.”