Given his ability and how long he has been around for, it is a surprise that Ruben Loftus-Cheek is only starting to make a real name for himself now.
Better late than never, though, and the 23-year-old will undoubtedly be delighted with how things are currently going after some very difficult moments at Chelsea.
Under Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte, Loftus-Cheek had constantly been overlooked before going out on loan to Crystal Palace, a move that has helped him get to where he is today.
There, when fit, the midfielder got regular minutes on the pitch and really started to strut his stuff.
Be it on the flank, an unfamiliar position for him at the time, or centrally, Loftus-Cheek was able to showcase his full skill set and impact games.
With his sheer power and ability to drive with the ball, the Chelsea academy graduate would often bulldoze past the opposition with ease.
The above were quite clearly qualities Gareth Southgate respected, with the England manager later handing Loftus-Cheek a place in his Three Lions World Cup squad.
Despite missing a chunk of that 2017/18 campaign due to injury, Loftus-Cheek had obviously shown the England boss enough in the appearances he did manage to make.
Fast forward to now, and Loftus-Cheek is a midfielder on the verge of tying down a spot in the starting XI of one of Europe’s elite clubs after helping his country reach a World Cup semi-final.
Since returning to Stamford Bridge, life has not always been easy under Maurizio Sarri, while a recurring back injury has done him no favours.
But for Loftus-Cheek, his future at Chelsea seems bright with that loan spell at Crystal Palace looking like it will go a long way for the England international.
Crystal Palace fans, what are some of your standout memories of Loftus-Cheek’s time at Selhurst Park? Join the discussion by commenting below.
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