Thomas Tuchel opens door for outcast Ruben Loftus-Cheek to return from Fulham spell and forge Chelsea career after admitting midfielder ‘reminded me of Michael Ballack’ for West London derby
- Thomas Tuchel has given Ruben Loftus-Cheek the hope of making it at Chelsea
- The midfielder’s career has come to a halt in recent years with a series of rental changes
- Loftus-Cheek was at Fulham this season, but only caught a glimpse
- Tuchel praised the 25-year-old and compared him to the iconic Michael Ballack
Thomas Tuchel suggested Ruben Loftus-Cheek get the chance to impress at Chelsea next season, after comparing the 25-year-old Fulham mercenary to Michael Ballack.
Loftus-Cheek will be loaned to Fulham this season and will therefore not be able to play against his mother club at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Midfielder Mateo Kovacic will be missing for Chelsea after feeling uncomfortable in practice, while center-back Antonio Rudiger will also skip Fulham’s visit.
Thomas Tuchel has handed a lifeline to Ruben Loftus-Cheek regarding his Chelsea future
The 25-year-old has spent the season on loan at Fulham, but only impressed with outbursts
Tuchel’s roster will be made one eye on their Champions League semi-final return leg against Real Madrid on Wednesday, after drawing the 1-1 first leg.
On Friday, Tuchel said on Loftus-Cheek, ‘I was quite a fan of his when he was younger.
He reminded me of Michael Ballack. There were ties to him who moved to Germany. We are well aware of his talent. I don’t know why things didn’t turn out the way he wanted, but he’s fine now.
“I can’t judge him on TV and hearsay. I like to work with players to give my opinion. ‘
Loftus-Cheek has struggled in recent years and found himself on loan regularly, but Tuchel says he has similarities with Chelsea icon Ballack (right)
When he faced Fulham, Tuchel added; ‘Fulham is a good chance to keep our advantage in the league, nothing else. I know very well that it is a match between two semi-finals.
‘It’s not an ordinary week, but I’m happy. Now is the time to prove to ourselves that we can focus our energies on tomorrow’s game.
‘We are in the middle of the race. Switching from one match to another isn’t easy, but who cares? My job is to find the mix, get the players in the right mindset and prepare for this match in a way that makes them all understand the importance. ‘