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Sam Allardyce is pleased Ruben Loftus-Cheek has left Chelsea for Crystal Palace – but believes he should have made the move sooner.
The 21-year-old midfielder left the Premier League champions on a season-long loan two weeks ago, becoming Frank De Boer’s first s igning since he was announced as Allardyce’s successor last month.
Former England boss Allardyce told Press Association Sport: ” It’s nice to see Ruben Loftus-Cheek going to Crystal Palace.
“I think if he’d done it five years ago he may well have been another Dele Alli or Harry Kane but unfortunately his development has been blocked by staying at Chelsea so long.
” There aren’t enough (players) getting into first-team football as quickly as possible. Y ou should be playing first-team football at some level at 17, not 20 or 21. Dele Alli is the pefect example of that, coming through the ranks at MK Dons.
“We need more players playing football at league level and ultimately going back to their club and trying to prove themselves.”
Allardyce, speaking at the start of the Special Olympics National Games Torch Run in Much Wenlock, continued: “The g lobal success of the Premier League has a negative effect on British youngsters being able to break into the top league in the world.
“With most clubs being owned by foreigners, it doesn’t matter where they get their players from.”
The 62-year-old, who continues to enjoy spending time with his family before taking stock of whether he wants to take on another challenge, also believes the Premier League could learn from rugby league and take its product overseas.
He said: “In terms of changing and evolving the game, we’re a little bit behind. We’ve only just brought goal-line technology in. Other sports have evolved even more.
“Wigan and Hull are going to play a (Super League) game in Australia, which brings me back to the great idea (Premier League executive chairman) Richard Scudamore had a few years ago about us playing a 39th game.
“We have the NFL playing here. Why are we not going out to the world and presenting our product live to those millions of fans that watch us?
“That has to be the next way forward. It will increase the brand and it will increase the money.”
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