Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger has confirmed he will leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season. This news was conveyed by the Blues manager Thomas Tuchel after his team’s victory over West Ham on Sunday (4/24/2022).
“(About) Toni, the media is talking about it. His situation indicates that he wants to leave the club. He told this a few days ago through a private conversation,” said Tuchel on Sunday (4/24/2022) as reported by Metro.
Rudiger’s agent has reportedly held talks with a number of top clubs regarding a potential summer transfer. However, recent reports claim the player chose to verbally agree a contract with La Liga giants Real Madrid.
Real Madrid’s rivals Barcelona have also actually been linked with a move for Rudiger. Director of Football Mateu Alemany and Jordi Cruyff even held a meeting with representatives of Rudiger at a hotel in Barcelona at the end of March.
However, Real Madrid are now believed to be in pole position to secure the 29-year-old’s signature. Los Blancos is said to have offered a fantastic fee, which reached 400,000 pounds, or the equivalent of approximately Rp. 7.3 billion per week to Rudiger.
Real Madrid are even willing to pour large funds to cover the signing fee and agent commission. According to reports, the parties concerned are working on contract details before a formal agreement is announced.
Meanwhile, Rudiger is under contract at Stamford Bridge until June 30, 2022. The club can no longer offer a new deal due to the British government’s sanctions against Roman Abramovich. The Russian tycoon is accused of having close ties to Vladimir Putin. As a result, the Blues were prohibited from buying new players and extending the contracts of old players.
Chelsea actually did not want to lose Rudiger just like that. The Daily Express report in February claimed that the Blues had tried to offer a new contract to thwart the transfer of their flagship defender.
The agreement will make Rudiger’s salary increase by 40 thousand pounds compared to his current fee which reaches 100,000 pounds. Unfortunately, the former AS Roma player refused a new deal from Chelsea.
Metro reports that the Blues have made another £230,000-a-week bid for Rudiger. However, the figure still seems not enough to hold Rudiger in West London.
“We tried hard (to keep Rudiger); I (also) struggle on a personal level. We made a big offer to him, the club has tried various things,” Tuchel said of Rudiger’s departure, as quoted by Metro.
“However, for the past few weeks, we couldn’t fight anymore because of the (UK government) sanctions. We couldn’t adjust (and) continue (our efforts), that’s how it is,” concluded the Blues coach.
Apart from that, Tuchel admitted he would give full support to Rudiger. The reason, the player has shown extraordinary performance with Chelsea so far.
As is well known, Rudiger is indeed one of the Blues’ mainstay players. He has transformed into a key figure in Thomas Tuchel’s squad, since joining from AS Roma in 2017.
Rudiger is considered to have an important role at the back, which helped lead Chelsea to lift the Champions League trophy last season. No wonder Rudiger’s departure from Stamford Bridge will cause a big loss for the Blues.
“He (Rudiger) deserves my full support because he has put in an outstanding performance until today. I’m happy because I had the opportunity to coach him and have him in the team,” Tuchel said, quoted by Metro.
“He has a huge influence in the dressing room. He is a person who gives courage to others. He is respected by everyone. He was a top defender throughout the last year and a half of his career. I respect what he does,” concluded the former PSG coach.