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Chelsea's Ruben Loftus-Cheek joins Crystal Palace on season-long loan

Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek has joined Crystal Palace on a season-long loan deal.

Loftus-Cheek becomes Frank de Boer's first signing as Palace manager, and Chelsea hope the move will enable the 21-year-old to gain regular first-team experience.

"I had the option of coming to Palace and I thought that it would be great for me," Loftus-Cheek told Palace's official website. "I live not too far away, I was born in Lewisham and Palace is good club so I thought it's a good chance to play here and be a part of the team.

"They have a very strong team and I'd like to be a part of that this season."

Having joined Chelsea's academy at the age of eight, Loftus-Cheek has established himself as one of the club's brightest home-grown prospects since John Terry, playing a key role in winning two FA Youth Cups, the under-21 Premier League and UEFA Youth League.

But his progress has stalled since making the transition to Chelsea's first-team squad and he was given just six substitute appearances in the Premier League under Antonio Conte last season.

Loftus-Cheek has represented England at every youth level, but missed this summer's European Under-21 Championship in Poland due to a back injury.

Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.

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