One European giant has played down transfer links with Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger.
The 28-year-old’s future at Stamford Bridge is uncertain as he has now entered the final 12 months of his contract. The Blues are trying to tie him down to a long-term extension but Rudiger and his agent are playing hard to get.
They know that La Liga outfit Real Madrid are monitoring his situation ahead of a potential move.
They can speak with Rudiger and his representatives in January under the Bosman ruling. Chelsea would then face the prospect of losing the centre-back for free on July 1.
Another club to be linked with his signature is Bayern Munich. They have been impressed by Rudiger’s performances since the arrival of Thomas Tuchel at Chelsea.
Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann was asked about Rudiger’s style of play recently. He praised the Germany international’s aggressiveness and called him a ‘decisive’ player.
However, Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has pointed to the club’s existing options in defence when asked about the transfer rumours.
He told DAZN (via Goal): “It’s not okay when we talk about players who are with other clubs. Julian said that about him in the press conference, but he’s a coach who sees a lot of players – so why shouldn’t he rate an international and speak about his strengths?
“We are really well filled in the center-back position. We have strengthened ourselves very well and brought in a top player in Dayot Upamecano, Lucas Hernandez is here, Tanguy Nianzou is there, Benjamin Pavard can also play inside – we really are very, very well staffed.”
It looks like Chelsea will not have to compete with Bayern when it comes to Rudiger’s signature.
They will still have to fend off Real, who remain on Rudiger’s list of potential next clubs. The prospect of playing in La Liga could entice him to move.
Chelsea defender wanted by Prem rivals
Arsenal and Liverpool are part of the hunt for Chelsea left-back Ben Chilwell, according to reports.
The Englishman has spent most of the current campaign on the bench. Tuchel has preferred to operate with Marcos Alonso on the left flank.
CaughtOffside claim that Arsenal and Liverpool are willing to offer Chilwell a route out of west London.
The 24-year-old would likely have to act as backup for either Kieran Tierney or Andy Robertson, however.