Chelsea youngster Nathan Ake remains hopeful of carving out a long-term career with the Premier League champions, despite going out on loan for a second successive season. The 20-year-old moved to Reading for one month of the 2014-15 campaign before agreeing a year-long spell at Watford this term.
The Netherlands Under-21 international has made just three appearances this season, most recently as a 75th minute substitute in the 1-0 defeat to Crystal Palace, having already played against Preston North End in the Capital One Cup and Newcastle United in the Premier League. The former Youth Cup winner is keen for further opportunities at Vicarage Road in an effort to force his way into Jose Mourinho's thinking.
"I came back to Chelsea from my summer holidays and tried to work out what would be the best option for me," he told the Watford Observer, over the summer decision regarding his future. "I spoke to the manager a little bit and he said I can stay and be around the team. I told him I want to be playing a lot this season. He understood that.
"We have a good relationship. Hopefully I can show him that next year I can come back and play for Chelsea. I think at one point you have to think about yourself. It is important to play a lot of games and to show that you are ready for Chelsea.
"If they don't think you are ready then you go out on loan again and try to impress them. The most important thing though is to prove to yourself that you are ready and hopefully I will do that here at Watford."
Ake has made 12 appearances for Chelsea during three seasons as a professional, mainly as a central defender. After being acquired from Feyenoord, he was handed a senior debut by Rafael Benitez against Norwich City in December 2012 but his career in west London has stifled under Mourinho's guidance.