PHOTO: Chelsea wonderkid training with Eden Hazard

Eden Hazard 2

Derby-linked Nathan Ake has been working hard in pre-season for Chelsea.

And, as he was keen to show his fans on Instagram, his exploits have seen him come up against some of the Premier League's great talents on a daily basis.

After training on Friday, the 19-year-old posted a picture of himself going head-to-head with Eden Hazard while training for the Blues. Whether he will line up alongside him this season, however, is another matter.

Ake has already made an impact at Stamford Bridge despite his tender age, having previously been voted Chelsea's young player of the year, while also making his Premier League debut at 17-years-old.

His long-term future, then, appears to be firmly with the Blues.

For the coming campaign, though, a loan move looks as though it could be on the cards for the youngster, with Derby County said to be interested in Ake's signature.

The Dutchman's versatility means he can play both at the back and in midfield - and it is through the middle where Rams boss Steve McClaren wants to use Ake.

He is seen as the perfect replacement for George Thorne at Derby, while a move would give him regular playing time to help his development, something Jose Mourinho would be a big fan of.

If so, Ake is doing things the right way by making the most of pre-season. He has been involved in Mourinho's team selections for friendlies and looks as though he is pulling his weight in training.

But, even then, the 19-year-old could play a role in Chelsea's campaign this season. Mourinho said earlier this week that the versatile youngster could stay in west London this term, meaning he might be prepared to give him a place on the bench at the very least - or even the odd start.

If that turns out to be the case, getting to grips with Hazard and co. will prove even more useful.

Is Ake one of the stars of Chelsea's future?

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