Loftus-Cheek determined to make Youth Cup his first trophy

Wednesday 23 Apr 2014
Loftus-Cheek says he is desperate to lift his first trophy

Ruben Loftus-Cheek says he is desperate to lift his first piece of silverware when his Chelsea side take on Fulham in The FA Youth Cup Final.

The midfielder and Blues captain says beating Fulham to the Cup would mean the world to him.

“I really want to lift it, I can’t tell you how determined I am to get there this year,” he said.

“I don’t think I’ve lifted a trophy before, so to make the Youth Cup my first would be very special.”

Chelsea v Fulham

2014 FA Youth Cup Final

1st Leg - Craven Cottage 28 April

2nd Leg - Stamford Bridge 5 May

Kick-off 7.45pm (both legs)

Loftus-Cheek is part of a Chelsea side with a strong pedigree in The FA Youth Cup.

Their 3-1 aggregate victory against Arsenal in the Semi-Final in April ensured they reached their third consecutive Final – and fourth in five years.

The Blues missed out in 2013 following a 4-2 aggregate defeat in the Final against Norwich.

Loftus-Cheek, 18, was part of the side that lifted the trophy in 2012, but spent much of the season on the peripheries due to injury problems - and only made a fleeting substitute appearance in the Final.

“To win it [in 2012] but not really be a part of the team throughout the campaign, it’s not quite the same,” he added.

“I was gutted against Norwich last year – I thought once we had scored the goal we would go on to win it, but it all just went down from there. So that was really difficult to take.

“Now I have so much hunger to win it this year – it would be amazing.”

Loftus-Cheek said he is well aware of the heritage of the competition – and how significant it has been in so many top player’s developments.

Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck and Jamie Carragher – as well as the famous Manchester United team of David Beckham, Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes, Gary and Phil Neville – are all now household names, and all picked their first silverware in The FA Youth Cup.

Loftus-Cheek has also impressed on England U19s duty this term

Loftus-Cheek has impressed at England U19 level this term

 

And now the Chelsea youngster is keen to add his name to that list.

“Obviously I aspire to be like those such as David Beckham and other great players that began their careers winning the Youth Cup,” said the London-born midfielder.

“Everyone sees and dreams of doing what they’ve done – so if I can win the Youth Cup this year and go on to become a big player in the future for Chelsea then that’s what I dream about.

“But at the moment I can just concentrate on the now – playing my best. I think I’ve got the ability to do what they’ve done, but we’ll see. It’s important not to get ahead of yourself.”

Chelsea take on Fulham in the 2014 FA Youth Cup Final over two legs – with the first taking place at Craven Cottage on 28 April, and the return fixture at Stamford Bridge a week later on 5 May.

By Jamie Reid Senior Writer