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Antonio Conte recalls 21-year-old defender after impressive loan spell to bolster Chelsea backline options

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has officially recalled defender Nathan Ake from his loan spell at Bournemouth and the Dutchman will return immediately.

As confirmed on their official website, the Premier League leaders have opted to end his stint with the Cherries as Conte will now have the benefit of using him for the second half of the campaign.

The 21-year-old enjoyed a positive spell under Eddie Howe, as he made 12 appearances and scored three goals having established himself as a key part of the team.

In turn, it’s no surprise that Conte has seen enough and decided to take him back to Stamford Bridge, where Ake will now compete with the likes of Cesar Azpilicueta and Gary Cahill for a spot in the starting XI.

On the other side of the decision, it will be a huge blow for Howe and Bournemouth as they lose a key part of their team midway through the campaign.

The club thanked Ake for his contribution over the last seven months in an official statement on their website, but they will be bitterly disappointed not to have him at Howe’s disposal for the rest of the season.

As for the young Dutchman himself, he’ll hope that he does indeed get opportunities to play for Conte, as returning from his loan spell and sitting on the bench will not be how he envisaged his season going and would arguably be a complete waste of time.

His versatility does give Conte options though, as he could be deployed in one of the wing back positions or afford others a well-earned rest while allowing the Chelsea boss to shift things around and find ways to sustain their title push.

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