Last season, Chelsea conceded 54 goals in the Premier League. Out of the top ten teams in the Premier League no team had conceded more goals. It was clear the Blues have a defensive problem. Thus in the summer they went out and spend big money on signing new players.
A lot of quality attacking talent came at Stamford Bridge. In the defensive part of things, they signed Ben Chilwell and Edu Mendy. However, it was the signing of Thiago Silva that excited the Chelsea fans a lot. After all, he has been one of the best defenders of the current generation. Though he was 36 years old and there were doubts whether he could adapt to the Premier League.
Only in a short space of time, he showed that he is very much capable of that. With Silva being the linchpin at the back, it meant that only one place was up for grabs for Chelsea’s four central defenders. Last season, Chelsea had four centre backs, and given their defensive record last season, it was clear that they needed a change.
Antonio Rudiger was expected to take the second spot at the centre back position. To the surprise of many, Lampard has given Rudiger the cold treatment. It is Kurt Zouma who has been the preferred partner alongside Thiago Silva. This season the German has rarely featured for the Blues.
Paris Saint Germain swoop for Rudiger
According to Le Parisien, PSG want to bring him to France in the January transfer window. It is believed that Thomas Tuchel is a big fan of the defender. Though Tuchel has been sacked as PSG manager it is unclear whether they will still pursue him or not.
Since the departure of Thiago Silva, they haven’t signed a defender to replace him. Rudiger is unlikely to be a direct replacement for Silva but he can still help to fill the void left by Silva to some extent. It is also not clear how much money the Parisian will offer for him.
It is likely that Chelsea will allow him to leave the club. In the summer they spent more than $200 million and they would like to recoup some money as well. The Mirror reported that he is no longer a part of Frank Lampard’s plan as well. The only issue could here be off the transfer fees for the player.
Rudiger has been a regular for the German national team. The Euros are coming up next summer in 2021. He would want to be a part of the German national team. The former Roam defender needs more game time for that and he is likely to get more playing time at PSG than at Chelsea.
A stumbling block for PSG
The report stated that Tuchel wants to bring him to Ligue 1. Since he was sacked as a PSG manager, Fabrizio Romano tweeted that Mauricio Pochettino is close to replacing him. At Tottenham, he had a good ball-playing defender in Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.
Rudiger lacks that ability, he is not a ball-playing defender. Though he has a lot of paces he often struggles to deal with counter-attacks. The German is at his best when his team is playing more defensively in a compact shape.
The likes of Tottenham and Barcelona have also shown interest in him. It is clear that if he wants to play in Euros next year he has to leave Chelsea next year. The way Pochettino wants his defenders to play is not suitable for Rudiger.
Perhaps he might move to a different club or the Parisians might go for a different defender. If he signs for the French giants there will be an advantage to him of playing in the Champions League. PSG will take on Barca in the Round of 16.