Thomas Tuchel verdict on revitalised Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Chelsea’s £30m headache

Ruben Loftus-Cheek was offered to West Ham United on deadline day this summer, when there were serious doubts lingering over his future at Chelsea .

On the same day, Saul Niguez joined the Blues on a season-long loan, a move met with great excitement given the Spaniard’s brilliant record for Atletico Madrid.

Just over one month later, however, it is Loftus-Cheek pushing for a spot in Thomas Tuchel’s XI and Saul out in the cold.

Many would have expected the pair’s roles to be reversed given Loftus-Cheek spent last season with relegation-bound Fulham  while Saul enjoyed a La Liga triumph with Atletico.

But Tuchel appears to favour the Englishman to the Spaniard at this early stage of the season, recognising the 25-year-old offers his side qualities which many of his other midfielders do not.

Explaining why Loftus-Cheek was handed a start in the 3-1 victory over Southampton  on Saturday, Tuchel said: “We decided to put Ruben because we were aware of their high pressing in midfield but we still wanted to go through midfield.

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