Crystal Palace have had another tough start to their Premier League season, and if reports are to be believed, the club are already looking at potential signings to strengthen their squad.
Roy Hodgson revealed that he would love to have Ruben Loftus-Cheek at the club in a recent interview. The Palace boss said, “Like a lot of other clubs I’m sure when the day comes when he becomes available for transfer, we will be sticking our noses into that. But whether we will get him again that’s another matter.”
Loftus-Cheek had a loan spell at Selhurst Park last season and impressed in the midfield role that led a place in the England national team. He subsequently represented the Three Lions in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Why the move would be the right fit for all parties involved
Despite his impressive performances for the Eagles last season, getting into the Chelsea playing XI was always going to be a tough task. The competition for places is fierce at Stanford Bridge as established stars like Cesc Fabregas and Ross Barkley have struggled to get regular minutes.
Palace themselves made a few good additions, most notably Max Meyer on a free transfer, but it seems like they still aren’t a complete midfield unit which explains their mediocre start.
Of course, the forwards haven’t been at their clinical best as the team has relied on Wilf Zaha a bit too much, but that midfield could get better with Loftus-Cheek.
Palace have managed 93 shots this season, the 13th best in the league, but need to create more chances to get a few more shots and convert them into goals. In the longer run, we might get to see the better of Meyer as he is still adapting to the pace of the league. He played in a deeper role last season but was offered a lot of protection by Domenico Tedesco’s setup.
Loftus-Cheek’s presence in central midfield would not only add a lot more strength and pace but will also allow Meyer to be deployed in an advanced role, something that suits him more. Loftus-Cheek was often played on the left of a midfield four, but Cabaye’s departure means he can be used in his preferred central midfield role.
It’s unlikely Loftus-Cheek will see too much game time from now until January, so perhaps a January move for the 22-year old is something Palace should target.