He has been in the papers recently for his hefty pay. But his performance against Arsenal saw him prove his worth and be compared to Socrates in playing style
This week the general population was made fully aware of the talents of Chelsea midfield talent Ruben Loftus-Cheek thanks to an agent dispute over the representation of the player. The print media were quick to pick up on the story and in particular the amount of money the 17-year-old was to be paid at the club before he turned 20.
£1.7 million was the grand total and the announcement came the same day former Chelsea YTS Carlton Cole made his claim that the clubs young players should be made to clean boots like they had to in his day.
It was all perfect fodder to have yet another pop at the ‘state of the game’.
But when Chelsea faced Arsenal in the NextGen Series semi-final in a game broadcast live on Eurosport Loftus-Cheek had his opportunity to show he may just be worth the ‘excessive’ fees he was being paid.
He did not disappoint.
The tall midfielder was instrumental in Chelsea taking a 3-1 lead in the game and stood out head and shoulders above the rest of the talent on show. His playing style and temperament even brought the commentator Stewart Robson to compare him to Brazilian legend Socrates.
Unbelievably Chelsea boss Dermot Drummy decided to bring off the player, seemingly believing the tie was won. That decision backfired tremendously as Arsenal fought back to take the game into extra-time.
Loftus-Cheek’s gaffer saw his blushes saved by a Lewis Baker goal but still it highlighted the overwhelming influence the player was having on the game.
He was even trending on Twitter for a little while and here is a selection of what was said about this huge talent…
Loftus-Cheek is gunna be a quality player , remember him from when he played against Wales U16 , smashed it ! #CFCU19— Hamzzz (@HamzaOsman_96) March 29, 2013
Ruben-Loftus Cheek is apparently as good as Socrates.— Tom Curren (@younglions_) March 29, 2013
Loftus-Cheek's impressed me the times I've watched this season.— Jamie Collett (@jamieberry11) March 29, 2013
Next-Gen commentator watching Chelsea v Arsenal just compared 17 year old Ruben Loftus-Cheek to Socrates! Little premature maybe.— Matthew Clark (@MatthewClark46) March 29, 2013
Ruben loftus-cheek... What a player! socrates reincarnated— £d Santino (@Ed_Santino) March 29, 2013
Damn loftus cheek is a serious baller— Patrinho (@JustPN11) March 29, 2013
Mate Ruben Loftus-Cheek is brilliant. At 17, 6'1...strong, composed on the ball, technically gifted. We're BLESSED to have him on our books.— Enigma(@MrMeeds) March 29, 2013
Oi that Ruben Loftus Cheek boy is an absolute BALLER! He was controlling that midfield, they couldn't get near him.— Juandeecees (@MagicDon11) March 29, 2013
Ruben Loftus-Cheek, remember the name.— ParkedTheBus (@ParkedTheBus) March 29, 2013
image: © EG Focus