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Antonio Rüdiger on Barcelona radar for January, but the signal is weak — report

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Unexpected rumor

FC Barcelona v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: Second Leg Photo by Power Sport Images/Getty Images

Antonio Rüdiger is currently third-choice in Chelsea’s centre back pecking order, and while he has claimed that he is happy with the present situation as it is an improvement on his previous standing, there’s always a possibility that the German international could decide to move in January in search of more playing time ahead of next summer’s delayed European Championship.

According to Barcelona-based (and -biased) Mundo Deportivo, one option could be the local giants, who are apparently looking to sign a center back following Gerard Piqué’s long-term injury.

Former La Masia prospect Eric Garcia, now at Manchester City but refusing to sign a new contract, is said to be the preferred target, but Barca could always look to promote from their own academy instead. Or perhaps they could explore a loan option with Rüdiger, or Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi, or perhaps recall their own loanee, Jean-Clair Todibo from Benfica.

It’s all just speculation of course, especially ahead of a presidential election at the club, though the report claims that Rüdiger was already offered to the team once, which matches similar reporting from Barcelona-based Sport a couple weeks ago, as well as Germany’s kicker magazine during the final days of the summer transfer window.

At Barcelona, Rüdiger would compete with the likes of Clement Lenglet and Ronald Araújo for a starting spot, so it wouldn’t exactly be a risk-free proposition, especially when compared with his relatively safe(r) spot as the first-backup at Chelsea. (Rüdiger leaving would probably mean that Tomori stays, on the other hand.)