The January transfer window is barely a week old, but Chelsea have already been rather busy.
Oscar and Mikel have moved on (for a record fee and for free, respectively), while the club have confirmed new loans for no less than three players — Izzy Brown’s move to Huddersfield the latest there — and recalled several more, including Kenedy, Musonda, Colkett, and Bamford (not yet official, but might as well be). Meanwhile, a few others were returned to sender, such as Wallace and Joao Rodriguez who were playing in South America, a couple more were not extended, such as Crawley duo Alex Davey and Mitchell Beeney, and several more are facing similarly expiring contracts this month (Piazon at Fulham, Kiwomya at Crewe, Baxter at Met Police).
But we digress.
The point of this article is supposed to be Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who this month may or may not be joining the Loan Army for the first time in his career. Some reports say he’s staying (e.g. Sky), others say he’s going (e.g. Standard). All reports seem to agree that there’s plenty of interest in the 20-year-old, with West Ham United, Newcastle United, Brighton, and, the latest, Stoke City all linked recently.
Stoke City boss Mark Hughes was even asked to comment on the speculation this morning, so he went right ahead and neither confirmed nor denied it.
“We are linked with lots of players and Chelsea have many out on loan already. I'm not saying yes or no but we're looking if good players are available."
-Mark Hughes; source: Sky
Is Loftus-Cheek available? Depending on whom we believe, he just might be. What is certain is that he’s not really playing though he has made the bench in three of our last five Premier League games. His last start was in September in the League Cup, but there’s every chance that he starts on Sunday in the FA Cup match against Peterborough ... unless he goes out on loan beforehand.