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.