Where Tottenham stand in Antonio Rudiger race with Chelsea star set to leave for free | Football | Sport


Chelsea appear to be fighting a losing battle to keep Antonio Rudiger at the club beyond next summer as his contract saga rumbles on. Rudiger will be out of contract next summer and is yet to verbally agree terms of a new deal, with the likelihood of the Germany international departing for nothing increasing with every day.

The 28-year-old has been arguably one of the world’s most in-form defenders in 2021 after helping Chelsea win the Champions League in May and playing a key role in their defensive solidity.

He began the year searching for a loan move away, having been frozen out under previous boss Frank Lampard following some poor performances.

But when Tuchel arrived in January, Rudiger was quickly welcomed back into the fold and began to show the form that made him a fans’ favourite.

The club opened talks with the defender soon after to discuss a pay rise and contract extension, but Rudiger has stalled over putting pen to paper to weigh up his options.

News of his potential availability has reached Europe’s elite, with Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona all reportedly showing an interest.

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“In the end, we need a bit of patience. I have no update right now.”

Rudiger was coy when asked about his future in November while away on international duty with Germany.

“For now I am only concentrating on what is happening right now,” he told German publication Welt am Sonntag, via The Mirror. “I owe that to the club, the coach and the team. I’m currently only focused on Chelsea. We’ll see what happens.”

Rudiger, who won two penalties in the 3-2 win over Leeds on Saturday, has made 166 appearances for the club, scoring nine goals.

He has also won four trophies in his time at the club, picking up winners’ medals in the FA Cup, Europa League, Champions League and Super Cup.

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