Chelsea’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek is being identified as a January transfer target by London rivals West Ham United, according to reports.
Loftus-Cheek has been hampered by injuries, but is highly-rated at Stamford Bridge.
He has made twenty-four appearances for Chelsea, but has struggled for game-time under Antonio Conte.
With Chelsea’s exit to West Ham in the EFL Cup went potential first-team opportunities for fringe players.
TuttoMercatoWeb claim the Hammers have opened talks over a possible move for the player, who draws comparisons with Manchester United’s French star Paul Pogba, due to his playing style.
Centre-midfielder Loftus-Cheek has also been compared to Germany great Michael Ballack, a former Chelsea player himself.
A permanent deal seems unlikely, as Chelsea may decide a loan would be better for his development instead.
A key part of any deal between the two clubs could hinge on the positive relationship between the two managers, Conte and Slaven Bilic.
Bilic may even try to use the relationship to enquire about the availability of another Chelsea youngster, Dominic Solanke, who may also see his first-team chances limited. Indeed, Solanke has not featured once this season.
By Steve Osborne @BlizzardSteve75