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Crystal Palace boss Hodgson: Loftus-Cheek back next week

Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek is ready to return to action for Crystal Palace.

Loftus-Cheek is to return to Palace on Monday and be declared fit from his ankle injury to play for the first time in 2018.

The on-loan midfielder, 22, has been with parent club Chelsea since his last first-team appearance - in the 3-2 defeat by Arsenal on December 28.

"Then as long as he comes through those sessions OK, which both we and he are hoping, he will have Sunday off and will come back to Palace on Monday and he will be available to us," Hodgson said.

"The medical department have to look and speak with him but my hope is that he will come on Monday, walk into the treatment room, they will say 'How you feeling Ruben?' and he will say, 'I'm feeling great, what time does training start?'.

"That is what I am hoping for. I've had a few disappointments lately so I've learnt to lower my level of hope and optimism."

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Paul Vegas

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