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Brighton & Hove Albion

Journalist claims Championship club ‘confident’ of Loftus-Cheek deal

Lee Ryder, the Chief Sports Writer at the Evening Chronicle, claims that Championship leaders Brighton & Hove Albion are ‘confident’ of signing Chelsea youngster Ruben Loftus-Cheek on loan. Newcastle United had also expressed their interest in the England Under-21 international.

The signing of the highly-regarded 20-year-old would certainly be seen as a real signal of intent from Chris Hughton, who is looking to secure promotion into the Premier League for the Seagulls, who have come so close in recent seasons. Loftus-Cheek is being allowed to leave on loan by Antonio Conte, who wants the player to have some regular first-team football.

West Ham United are another club that had hoped to sign the player to boost their own midfielder options but the player could be about to drop down a league, for the next few months at least. Geographically this may suit the player, but it remains to be seen if he’d have the amount of football that Conte would want. Brighton do have midfield competition of their own with the likes of Beram Kayal, Steve Sidwell, Dale Stephens and Oliver Norwood, but Loftus-Cheek could occupy a number ten role as well, although Hughton does tend to play a 4-4-2 more often than not.

Nevertheless, this would be seen as something of a coup for Brighton, especially against some other big clubs who themselves would’ve been confident of snapping the player up. Loftus-Cheek has made just three appearances in the Chelsea side this season, two of those coming in the EFL Cup.

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