Friday, October 15, 2021

Rudiger on links to Bayern Munich: It honours you

SoccerNews in English Premier League 5 Oct 2021

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Antonio Rudiger is honoured by rumoured interest from Bayern Munich, but the defender is focused only on performing well for Chelsea.

The centre-back has become integral for the Blues since the arrival of Thomas Tuchel, with only Cesar Azpilicueta (2,054) playing more Premier League minutes under the German coach.

No Chelsea player has managed a better tackle success rate than the 71.88 per cent posted by Rudiger, who had struggled for minutes towards the end of Frank Lampard’s reign.

However, the 28-year-old’s long-term future at Stamford Bridge remains unclear. He is out of contract at the end of the campaign, leading to rumours of a move elsewhere on a free transfer.

Bayern have been one of the clubs linked to Rudiger, who spoke about the speculation while on international duty with Germany.

“It honours you, but I don’t allow myself to be distracted too much,” he told the media on Tuesday.

“I have certain obligations to my club and that is to perform. But it also shows that you have done a lot right in the past months and years.”

Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann was asked about Rudiger recently and while refusing to discuss the player’s possible arrival at the Allianz Arena, he did offer praise for his development.

“I’m not talking about players from other clubs, particularly outside of the transfer window,” Nagelsmann said. “But I will speak of him as a football fan: he has developed very well.

“Thomas Tuchel has coached him well. Before he was sidelined at Chelsea, but now he is a crucial player. I can’t say anything else.

“Believe it or not, I haven’t spoken to Brazzo [Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic] about it yet. Even if I had, I wouldn’t give that away.

“I have to see how long he still has to go on his contract. Then I will see if I have any money in my wallet.”

Dayot Upamecano joined Bayern in the previous transfer window, adding to a squad that already boasted Niklas Sule and Lucas Hernandez, plus youngsters Josip Stanisic and Tanguy Nianzou.

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