Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has revealed that youth star Ruben Loftus-Cheek is set to become a first team player next season, according to reports from the Express.
Loftus-Cheek may have already gained some first team action by making his debut in the last game of the Champions League group stages against Sporting Lisbon, but the 19-year-old will play a much more prominent role in the 2015-2016 campaign.
The starlet has been training regularly with his seniors following some impressive displays in the UEFA Under-21 Youth League, in which the young Blues defeated Shakhtar Donetsk in the final.
Loftus Cheek has also been a regular in the England Under-19 setup, and Mourinho believes he is now ready to be part of his plans next season.
“Next season, Ruben will not be a kid in the development process,” he said.
“He will be a first-team player, absolutely ready to play and compete. And we will do the same with two or three or four players.
The Portuguese manager went on to add that while he is keen on promoting youngsters into his squad, there needs to be a balanced ratio when it comes to senior players and kids.
“Some of the older ones will go on loan to play every game in the Championship or the Premier League, even abroad,” he continued.
“And we will bring some of the younger ones into the process. But to have them all at the same time in the first-team squad is hard.
“I cannot have a squad of 10 men and 10 kids. I must have a squad like we have now of 16 or 17 seniors and three or four kids.”
The Blues are currently top of the Premier League table 10 points in front of Arsenal, who they face at the Emirates this weekend.