Chelsea midfielder Oriol Romeu has returned to Spain on a season-long loan deal with Valencia as the 21-year-old looked to gain some vital first-team football after an injury disrupted spell with the Blues. 

Romeu suffered a knee injury which kept him out for almost all of 2013 and it is believed both he and Chelsea feel his development would be best served with a return to his homeland.

Chelsea - via their official club website - released a statement confirming Romeu's loan to Valencia and wished the player well ahead of his spell with Los Che: "We wish Oriol well in his homeland."

Romeu is a very effective player who first made his mark with Chelsea first under Andre Villas-Boas.

The young Spanish midfielder sits just in front of the defensive line as a holding midfielder very much like Sergio Busquets does with Barcelona. 

This chosen style of football very much coincided with the heavily reported desire for attacking football similar to that of Barcelona from Roman Abramovich. 

Romeu took a bit of time to adapt to English football following his move from Barcelona in 2011 but he really started to stand out following the arrival of Roberto Di Matteo.

However Romeu since then has not been dealt the most fortuitous hand with the dismissal of Di Matteo seeing his first-team opportunities diminish before a season ending knee injury struck in December which would keep Romeu out for the remainder of the campaign. 

The player heads to Valencia hoping he will be able to slot right into Miroslav Dukic's first-team plans and have a successful, injury free season before heading back to Chelsea.

Dukic is known for his preference towards a 4-3-3 formation, so it is expected he will utilise the same system in his new role as Valencia manager.

Valencia do however possess a large pool of talent within their midfield ranks with Sergio Canales, Ever Banega, Dani Parejo and Javi Fuego, so it will not be an instant guarantee Romeu will walk into the side. 

Dukic will however require a holding midfielder as part of his midfield trio and whilst Banega can be used in this position he does possess the energy and passing ability that could see him play further up the pitch which would open up a position for Romeu to just sit in ahead of the defensive line.  

Romeu holding and a rotation of Parejo, Banega and Fuego in the two midfield positions slightly further up in the middle of the pitch could prove to be very fruitful in Valencia's pursuit to get back into the Champions League - after being pipped to fourth place by Real Sociedad last season.

What must be also be stressed is that this loan move has come at just about the right time in terms of the transfer window, it allows Romeu to join up with his new Valencia teammates in pre-season and build up his fitness ahead of the upcoming campaign. 

He will surely still be recovering slightly for the aforementioned serious knee injury and it may well be the case that Dukic uses this pre-season period in which we currently find ourselves to build up both Romeu's fitness and familiarity with the system before easing the midfielder into regular first-team football once the season has begun in earnest.

Valencia took to their own official Twitter page to welcome Romeu to the club this afternoon and it has even been suggested by some quarters of the Spanish media that Romeu may well stay with Valencia on a permanent basis should he have a successful season at the Mestalla.

 

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Topics:
Premier League
Football
Valencia
Chelsea
La Liga