Belfast Telegraph

Chelsea's Nathan Ake confident Bournemouth loan played part in his development

Nathan Ake believes he has returned to Chelsea a better player than when he left after spending half the season on loan at Bournemouth.

The 21-year-old Dutchman joined the Cherries in the summer and was expected to play out the campaign with the south-coast club.

However, Ake has been recalled early by his parent club, where he is expected to provide competition for Marcos Alonso at left wing-back.

Ake, who can also play in midfield and central defence, made a total of 12 appearances for Bournemouth, scoring three goals including a late winner in the dramatic 4-3 victory over Liverpool.

The Dutchman believes the experience at the Vitality Stadium can only serve him well as Antonio Conte's squad look to maintain their place at the top of the Premier League.

"Over the six months I feel I have developed as a player, both on and off the pitch," Ake said on Bournemouth's official club website, www.afcb.co.uk.

"To start with I wasn't playing too much, but I dealt with that mentally, kept going and was happy when I got my chance.

"I was able to learn a lot from the (Bournemouth) manager (Eddie Howe). He spoke to me a lot about how I could improve and I picked up a lot of little ideas and different ways of thinking.

"Of course the Liverpool game was the standout moment. It was a crazy game and to score the winning goal was an amazing feeling. It's something that I'll remember for the longest time.

"That was not the only good memory. We also had some other good games where we kept clean sheets which were great and other games which I will remember for the wrong reasons."

Ake firmly believes he can have an impact on the remainder of Chelsea's season.

"The ambition now is to continue to improve and break into the team at Chelsea," he added. "It is a great team and the manager there has given me a lot of confidence, so it is something I am looking forward to."

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