After a flurry of reporting last weekend, it’s been mostly quiet on the Antonio Rüdiger exit front, even if the 27-year-old defender looks no closer to actually playing for Chelsea. His lone sighting remains his bench appearance on opening day; since then he’s not been seen despite the other four center backs rotating through the available minutes.
Or as Lampard put it in his pre-match press conference yesterday when asked if there was anything new on Rüdiger or other potential outgoing transfers:
“Once the window shuts every player that will be here will be used within our squad, because it’s a long season and a lot of competitions coming up. And we’ll know more on Monday.”
“[Regarding Rüdiger] no, no more developments.”
-Frank Lampard; source: Football.London
That said, Tottenham Hotspur and PSG still appear to be the forerunners for his signature, with vague mentions of potential interest from Italy as well. Spurs appear to be pushing harder than PSG, though most reports still see Rüdiger only as a fallback target should Spurs fail to sign the wonderful Milan Škriniar from Inter.
One of the main potential complications is of course the sordid history between the two London rivals. We don’t usually do business with each other: Gus Poyet was the last player to move for a fee from Chelsea to Spurs back in 2001, while the wounds from the Luka Modrić saga are still fresh for many.
However, these are not normal circumstances with COVID-19’s impact widely felt by football clubs around the globe, and there aren’t many clubs that could afford Rüdiger. So it appears that Chelsea may be a bit more lenient this one time. The Evening Standard and The Telegraph, among others, have reported in the last day that the Blues would be willing to let Rüdiger go, even to Spurs, as long as he signs a contract extension to protect his value for next summer’s transfer window.
For what it’s worth, Sky Sports Germany have upped that ante a level higher even — as they often do — claiming that Chelsea and Tottenham already have an agreement, and a deal can be completed as soon as a resolution is reached over the contract extension.
That’s unlikely to be the case just yet, but we do have a couple more days to figure things out.