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Fulham boss Scott Parker talks up ‘unplayable’ Ruben Loftus-Cheek

Sonia Twigg, PA
·2-min read

Fulham boss Scott Parker believes on-loan midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek can be “unplayable” at times in the Premier League.

The 25-year-old enjoyed a prolific breakthrough season at Chelsea before he ruptured his Achilles in May 2019, spending more than a year on the sidelines before returning in June last year.

He then struggled to find consistent playing time at Chelsea during Project Restart and joined Fulham for this season.

Loftus-Cheek initially struggled to make an impact, but has grown into his role in the second half of the campaign and has recently been employed by Parker as a number 10.

Ahead of the Cottagers’ clash with Crystal Palace, Parker was full of praise for former Eagles loanee Loftus-Cheek.

He said: “I was talking to him about it yesterday to be honest, and from when he first came into the building, (I) sensed someone a little bit weary, someone who was doubting a little bit, had a lot of concerns, he’d been out for an extremely long amount of time and not played a lot of football.

“So still loads to come, but this is a player that in given moments in games can just take the game by the scruff of the neck and be that powerful, technically gifted midfield player.

“I think he’s grown in confidence, I think the environment and the work he’s done, how hard he’s worked in this short space of time has been a credit to him really.

“His self-belief is right there, his self-belief has to be there, he’s playing in the best league in the world and at times is unplayable in the best league in the world against teams and against players who are world class.

“Ruben is going up against those players and really showing his quality, so for sure his self-belief is there.

“You look at his career and other than the period at Palace there hasn’t really been a sustained period (of first-team action), he was at Chelsea for a long time, probably had a few bit-parts, never really had a consistent run of games so I think that’s helped as well.

“Like I said I’ve been really pleased with him and there’s loads more to come, unbelievable kid, unbelievable professional, comes out every day wanting to work hard and that’s why he’s got every chance of being a top-class player.”