Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Tuchel ´relaxed´ over Rudiger future amid PSG and Real Madrid links

SoccerNews in English Premier League 17 Sep 2021

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Thomas Tuchel is “relaxed” over Antonio Rudiger’s future amid reports the defender could leave Chelsea as a free agent at the end of the season.

Rudiger’s contract expires next June and the centre-back has been linked with the likes of Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich.

The Germany international has thrived under compatriot Tuchel, with standout performances including a commanding display in the Champions League final victory over Manchester City in May.

Blues head coach Tuchel is hopeful Rudiger will remain at Stamford Bridge, but knows there are no guarantees he will stay with the European champions.

He said in a press conference ahead of Sunday’s London derby at Tottenham: “I hope they find solutions but it’s not only between coaches and players. It’s between the club, the players and the agent. We hope they find a solution.

“He plays excellent, he’s been very consistent for a long time at a very high level. He’s very calm, very focused and obviously it’s not a distraction [his future] for him. Everything is in place, give the time needed, sometimes it takes a bit longer and sometimes fast.

“No news from my side, I think Antonio feels very, very good at Chelsea. He feels the respect he has from his team-mates and the importance in the team, in the squad.

“That’s well deserved, because he delivers. He feels the love from the supporters, he plays in the strongest league in Europe, so not many reasons to change that.

“In the end it’s between him and the club and that’s in good hands. I’m calm and relaxed and whatever has to happen will happen.”

Tuchel revealed that N’Golo Kante is available to return at Spurs, but Christian Pulisic remains sidelined with an ankle injury.

Chelsea are second in the top flight and beat Zenit 1-0 in the Champions League on Tuesday, but Tuchel says there is plenty more to come.

Asked if he feels his side had not been at their best, the German said: “Yeah but I didn’t expect us to be at our top level early in September, especially after this pre-season and COVID.

“For me at the moment, it is more important that we are competitive, we play relentlessly and have belief to overcome difficult minutes and periods within games.

“Aston Villa played at their top level, this is what we have to accept and respect. Competition is high. It is a good thing that we are able to win.”

Chelsea have won their past two Premier League away games against Tottenham, as many as in their previous 13 visits.

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