Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel issues Antonio Rudiger contract threat as talks at standstill

Tuchel comments on Chelsea's win at Leicester

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Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has come clean on Antonio Rudiger’s contract situation as the German continues to resist putting pen to paper at Stamford Bridge. With the January transfer window fast approaching, the Blues risk other European heavyweights sniffing around for a pre-contract arrangement ahead of a free summer transfer. 

Rudiger is an integral part of Tuchel’s defence who, having conceded just four goals in 12 Premier League games, are considered the best in the division. 

Against Leicester on Saturday, the centre-back helped himself to a superb headed goal, his second of the season. 

And while celebrations were jubilant, they may have been tainted slightly by the nagging thought that he could soon leave the club. 

With less than a year left on his current deal, pre-contract arrangements can begin with other sides from January 1, and there are believed to be plenty interested. 

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Among them are reportedly Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and PSG, so the Blues may have a tough time convincing the 28-year-old that the grass will not be greener elsewhere. 

“He [Rudiger] has been outstanding from day one and is getting better and better at a very high level,” admitted Tuchel after their impressive 3-0 Leicester triumph. 

“The situation is the situation. We want him to stay, this is very clear and he knows it.

“But sometimes in these situations there is a certain delay and, obviously, there is a delay in these talks and his decision.

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“It can happen these days but it does not effect his mentality, it doesn’t affect his quality, it doesn’t effect his behaviour.

“He is fully committed to Chelsea right now and I am absolutely sure he feels the trust, respect and love from the club and spectators.

“For me, he is a big competitor and he is exactly the right spot. He is in the most competitive league and at a club where winning matters, so let’s be a bit patient and hopefully we have a happy end.”

Rudiger’s Chelsea career truly took off when Tuchel was installed as Frank Lampard’s replacement in January of this year. 

With strength, pace and athleticism, his skill set is perfectly suited to play on the left side of Tuchel’s signature back three. 

To find a replacement of similar quality would require big investment, something the club’s hierarchy are understandably keen to avoid. 

That could be made even more painful if they fail to recoup any money for the German defender, which would become an inevitability if a contract is not signed between now and the summer. 

Which way the pendulum swings remains to be seen, but Rudiger has certainly made Chelsea sweat over his future, and his performances may ultimately help him to get what he wants. 

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