Thomas Tuchel has insisted he is not worried about Antonio Rudiger’s contract situation at Chelsea, but has stressed that he believes the Blues are the perfect club for the defender.
Rudiger’s current deal expires at the end of the summer and while he is open to staying at Stamford Bridge, he has been unimpressed with Chelsea’s offer and is prepared to consider his options, with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid two of the sides keen.
Despite the significant uncertainty surrounding Rudiger, Tuchel insisted that he does not believe the centre-back has been distracted and backed him to continue performing at a high level.
“He has been outstanding from day one and is getting better and better at a very high level,” Tuchel said (via football.london).
“The situation is the situation. We want him to stay, this is very clear and he knows it. But sometimes in these situations there is a certain delay and, obviously, there is a delay in these talks and his decision.
“It can happen these days but it does not effect his mentality, it doesn’t affect his quality, it doesn’t effect his behaviour. He is fully committed to Chelsea right now and I am absolutely sure he feels the trust, respect and love from the club and spectators.
“For me, he is a big competitor and he is exactly the right spot. He is in the most competitive league and at a club where winning matters, so let’s be a bit patient and hopefully we have a happy end.”
Under Tuchel, Rudiger has blossomed into one of the world’s top defenders – a stark contrast from an error-laden spell under Frank Lampard which saw him nearly leave Chelsea in 2020 – but Tuchel believes that he is not responsible for his fellow German’s excellent form.
“I think Toni can deliver top quality no matter who is on the sideline,” Tuchel said. “He was a strong player in Italy and played under several strong coaches for Chelsea. He was always strong.
“We have a good relationship and he feels the trust and respect. He knows what to do, accepts his role, lives his role to the maximum and this is what we demand.
“We demand a lot from him and he delivers a lot. But I don’t think it’s dependent by who is on the sideline. I think a good relationship, a trustful and honest relationship, helps everyone. It helps me as a coach and every player. We want to instils this and keep this.
“At the moment, this is what we have. So it’s now Toni and my duty to keep this going.”