Ruben Loftus-Cheek reportedly wants a loan move away from Chelsea.

It’s no surprise given the lack of game time the midfielder has had this season.

He’s not a teenager anymore and at 21 he needs to be getting minutes on the pitch under his belt to stop his development from stalling.

Unusually for someone coming through the ranks at Stamford Bridge, Loftus-Cheek has never been out on loan and The Times says that is exactly what he wants to do as he believes there is little chance of him becoming part of Antonio Conte’s first-team squad next season.

He played just 343 minutes in all competitions this season, that’s less than four complete matches in total.

It’s clear he does need to leave the Blues temporarily for his own good.

So where could he go? We take a look at six destinations where he could thrive.

Watford

When Chelsea lined up against Watford on Monday, there were three former Hornets in the Blues’ starting lineup.

Kenedy, Nathan Aké and Nathaniel Chalobah have all previously spent time at Vicarage Road away from Stamford Bridge, so there is obviously some trust there.

Under departing boss Walter Mazzarri, the Hornets were not averse to playing three at the back like Conte’s side, so Loftus-Cheek could get some similar game time in a team playing a formation not dissimilar to the one back at Chelsea.

And with a new manager, he would go somewhere and have a fresh start like the rest of the Watford players.

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It’s also not too far away from Chelsea so he wouldn’t have to completely uproot his life.

Swansea

Like with Watford, Loftus-Cheek was reportedly a Swansea City transfer target in January, according to Metro.

And again, like with the Hornets, the Blues have history of sending young players to Swansea, with Josh McEachran and Fabio Borini previously making the trip from west London to the south of Wales.

With Paul Clement in charge at Swansea, Chelsea will have someone they trust in terms of bringing through youth talent – he was part of the Blues’ backroom staff between 2007 and 2011.

Leon Britton coming into the team at the end of the season reinforced the needs for midfield reinforcements at the Liberty Stadium.

After only just staying up, they will want reinforcements and Swansea can’t rely on a 34-year-old for long periods of next season, so there may be a great opportunity for Loftus-Cheek to get himself a starting spot at a Premier League side.

Brighton

According to The Evening Standard, a possible destination for Loftus-Cheek is Brighton and Hove Albion.

Chris Hughton’s side apparently made enquiries for him in January, but the Blues wanted him to stay in the Premier League.

And the Seagulls will obviously want reinforcements as they go into the top flight, and Loftus-Cheek will be familiar with the city with his brother a former student at the university there.

But if you look at the current squad, the midfield is lacking in Premier League experience, with Steve Sidwell the only player with real top-flight experience in England.

Loftus-Cheek won’t change that, but his performances for England Under-21s and cameo shows for Chelsea show he definitely has the quality to help Brighton do well in the Premier League.

And with Fikayo Tomori spending time at the Amex, the Blues are obviously happy with the setup there.

Newcastle

Like Brighton, Newcastle United were thought to be chasing Loftus-Cheek in the last transfer window.

Rafa Benítez will want to strengthen his squad after winning the Championship as there will be real pressure on the Magpies to have a good season.

With Tom Cairney from Fulham subject of Newcastle transfer rumours, alongside Aaron Mooy, currently on loan at Huddersfield Town from Manchester City, it’s clear the Spaniard wants a midfielder.

So why not go in for Loftus-Cheek?

A loan deal would be considerably cheaper than the reported £12million Newcastle are willing to pay for Cairney according to The Sun.

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The Blues sent Christian Atsu there this season and if Loftus-Cheek can prove himself in the pressure cooker that is St James’s Park, he will be well and truly ready for Stamford Bridge.

Fulham

While Chelsea may want him playing Premier League football, a move to the Championship may not be the end of the world.

It would have to be a club pushing for promotion of course, and after play-off disappointment this year, you’ll be sure that Slavisa Jokanovic’s Fulham will see themselves as one of the clubs that can target a place towards the top of English football’s second flight.

Their current midfield trio of Cairney, Stefan Johansen and Kevin McDonald is one of the best in the league, but beyond that, with Scott Parker set to leave, they are very thin in the middle of the pitch.

The Blues already know that Fulham can do a good job with their youngsters – both Tomas Kalas and Lucas Piazon have thrived at Craven Cottage this season.

Tammy Abraham, Izzy Brown and Kasey Palmer have also excelled in the Championship this year, and the pressure of a promotion push could also stand Loftus-Cheek in good stead for a title challenge at Chelsea.

Villarreal

While they may want him to get first-team football in England, perhaps a move to Spain wouldn’t be the worst in the world.

Jérémie Boga has been one shining light in a poor Granada side while Charly Musonda looked good at Real Betis before an injury cut short his spell in LaLiga.

Villarreal are obviously a better side, but they aren’t averse to taking players on loan from clubs in the Champions League – Denis Cheryshev spent time on loan from Real Madrid, while they currently have Andrés Fernández and José Ángel on loan from Porto.

With influential captain Bruno Soriano not getting any younger, he is 32, there will be a chance for another midfielder to compete with the likes of Manu Trigueros and Rodri in the centre of the pitch, allowing Jonathan dos Santos to thrive in a wider role on the right.

And that could give Loftus-Cheek the perfect opportunity to thrive in one of Europe’s top leagues, while also being exposed to European football.

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