England manager Gareth Southgate decided to leave out Ruben Loftus-Cheek for the October internationals, calling up Chelsea teammate Ross Barkley and Chelsea lonaee Mason Mount, among others, instead. Part of Southgate’s reasoning was the ongoing search for fresh talent. Part of it had to do with Loftus-Cheek’s recent and ongoing injury concerns.
While the 22-year-old made his long-awaited first start of the season last week in the Europa League against Vidi FC, he’s apparently still not 100 per cent recovered. As reported by the Times, Chelsea were more than happy to keep Ruben back at Cobham for these two weeks, to complete his rehabilitation from the foot injury that had kept him out for several weeks. Chelsea have apparently even rejected a potential call-up to the England U21 squad for him (he remains eligible thanks to his year of birth and UEFA’s rules) from Aidy Boothroyd.
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Ruben’s injury, like most of his injuries, came at the worst time and he continues to play catch-up both physically and tactically. Hopefully he will eventually work his way back into serious minutes as well.