Antonio Rudiger’s current Chelsea contract expires in the summer and is set to leave Stamford Bridge as a free agent – something Thomas Tuchel is desperately trying to avoid
Thomas Tuchel has reiterated that he is confident Antonio Rudiger will sign a new deal as he sent a clear message to the Chelsea star.
The defender’s contract expires in the summer and, as it stands, he will leave Stamford Bridge as a free agent.
Chelsea are trying to negotiate an extension, however, but they have yet to meet the German’s lofty wage demands.
Rudiger’s exit would be a huge blow to the club as he has arguably been their best player this season, taking his game to another level under Thomas Tuchel.
The centre-half made a big impact once again on Wednesday night as he scored the winning goal against Tottenham in the second leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final.
Chelsea would secure a 1-0 victory (3-0 on aggregate) to book a place in the final.
And Tuchel was bullish in his response about Rudiger’s future in west London.
Asked if he will leave Chelsea in the summer, he said: “Everybody knows but there’s a lot of ‘if’ in your question. Let’s wait to see what becomes the reality.
Asked if he is confident they can tie down Rudiger to a long-term deal, Tuchel added: “Of course we are confident. We have things to offer and he is the player he is in a Chelsea shirt and in a Chelsea environment. I think he knows it very well.”
Rudiger is not concerned about what happens in the summer, however, as his sole concern is enjoying this “chapter”, which he reckons is the best of his career.
He said at full-time: “I’m enjoying it. You have to see it in chapters. I enjoy this chapter. So far yeah it’s the best part of my career. As you said there are a lot of games and the schedule is getting busier and busier.”
Jamie Redknapp is adamant Chelsea need to do everything they can to keep Rudiger at the club, even if it means giving in to his wage demands.
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He said: “Brilliant, you’ve got to sign him up. You have to. Unfortunately clubs don’t want to pay the top dollar.
“But, if you were to let him go in the summer you’re going to have to buy someone for £40, £50 million whatever it is to replace him and give them the big wages. It’s almost better going we love you, you’re a massive part of this club. You’ve been so influential in the Champions League win last year.
“The crowd love him. I think if he says what he means and wants to stay at the club – then it’s all there for him. He can achieve all the ambitions. They’re going places. They always have been. The owners have always spent the big money they need, they need to get him signed up very quickly.”