CM: Why the comparison between Loftus-Cheek and Milinkovic-Savic holds up

By Oliver Fisher -

Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been in fantastic goalscoring form so far in 2024, and head coach Stefano Pioli named a player from his Lazio days that he reminds him of. recall how the midfield from last season of Sandro Tonali, Rade Krunic, Ismael Bennacer and Tommaso Pobega amassed a combined nine goals in 40 appearances. After his brace last nice, Loftus-Cheek is on seven goals on his own.

The constant discomfort linked to a groin pain that greatly affected him between last October and November in terms of consistency of performances and above all ease of running – the aspect that has always most distinguished his way of interpreting football – seem today a distant memory.

Milinkovic-Savic, Franck Kessie and Adrien Rabiot are the last three midfielders in Serie A to reach double figures considering all competitions. The latter got 11 last year, while the Ivorian got 14 in 2020-21 and the ex-Lazio man got the same in 2017-18.

Kessie though was one of the designated penalty takers, but he was also a different player to Loftus-Cheek who will probably never have the ability to be a blocker in front of the defence in the non-possession phase.

However, he is a perhaps less technical but physically more dominant version of Milinkovic-Savic, a tactical weapon that Pioli has learned to discover over the months and also a versatile option as a No.8 or a No.10.

With six goals in his last eight official matches, RLC is probably in his best state since 2018-19 when Maurizio Sarri made him a cornerstone of his Chelsea side.


Tags AC Milan Ruben Loftus-Cheek Sergej Milinkovic-Savic


  1. Food for thought for those who thought our midfield is weaker made up of Chelsea rejects…

    22/23 Sandro, Rade, Pobega and Bennacer combined for 9 goals altogether.

    RLC already has 7 all by himself…

    1. Sandro and Bennacer played as DMs, same for Pobega and Krunic played pretty much everywhere Pioli wanted him to, RLC is currently an AM and scored most of his goals from that position, so our only past players you can compare him to are Diaz, Hakan and also Krunic from time to time.

    2. Lol, with that kind of comparison you can say that he is better than Paolo Maldini as well, since Maldini wasn’t exactly a goal scorer. He is played as an AM while the others were DM, very different.

  2. Big difference between the 2 is that SMS is also a playmaker. He assists as much as he scores, creates for others. Imobile is a totally different player without SMS passes. The last 3, 4 years he averaged around 10 g and 10 assists per season at Lazio. RLC is missing that part of the game.

  3. Well that’s an odd comparison. Why even bring Tonali and co into that? RLC has been playing primarily as a CAM or support striker if anything. Krunic, Tonali and Bennacer were DMs. He should probably be compared to Diaz or Hakan before him if anything and in that case, the difference in goal contributions is less jarring. Even if you include SMS in the conversation, SMS has way more assists and scores similarly. It also goes to show he’s less of a playmaker but more of a support striker or attacker. It decent for a first season though but I think he should have used further back on the pitch for physicality. My guess is that Reijnders is so bad at finishing Pioli has no option but to put RLC up

  4. And Pioli only started to use him well, Imagine he landed in the capital and not Guendouzi (not that I have an issue with the frenchman) , Lazio would probably be fighting for the 1-3 position in the league.

    Well done to utilising him well, Pioli is underrated 👏

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