In an open letter posted on The Players’ Tribune, Antonio Rüdiger, central defender of Chelsea, said goodbye to the London club, recounting his arrival, and especially his departure. The German international will leave the Blues free, and points to the lack of interest on the part of the Chelsea board for his extension.
Antonio Rüdiger expressed his feelings in a long open letter to Chelsea fans posted on The Players’ Tribune. He details how he discovered N’Golo Kanté on his arrival, the strong ties that unite him with some of the locker room, the Champions League victory against City, but also the slump when Lampard was on the bench and his free start at the end of the season.
“We’re not robots, you know?”
The central defender, recalling that his departure is made while the sale of Chelsea is still not resolved and that he had no certainty concerning an extension, nevertheless deplores the lack of consideration on the part of the club. “Unfortunately, my contract negotiations had already started to become difficult last autumn, he recalls. Business is business, but when you have no news from the club from August to January, the situation becomes complicated “After the first offer, there was a long period of silence. We’re not robots, you know? You can’t wait months with so much uncertainty about your future.”
“Obviously, no one saw the sanctions coming, but in the end, other big clubs showed interest, and I had to make a decision, justifies Antonio Rüdiger, who could take over the management of Real Madrid at the end of the season. summer. I’ll leave it at that, because apart from business, I have nothing bad to say about this club.”
“It was the most difficult period of my career”
The German international also returned to last season, where he had been shelved by Franck Lampard at the start of the exercise, before finally starting in the Champions League final when Thomas Tuchel landed on the sidelines of the Blues. “Obviously it was a crazy season for me. I hate to say ‘crazy’, but what other word could I use? Not even six months before that final, I was on the floor,” he recalls.
“At the time, I had been dropped from the team, and I couldn’t even figure out why. We had a meeting one day, and the manager told me that we had a great team, and that he preferred others to me. Boom – it was over. After that there were a lot of rumors. I was getting a lot of insults on social media. It was the hardest time of my life. career, and I stayed silent because I didn’t want to cause problems for the club.”
“When Tuchel arrived as manager, it was a new life for me”
After this period, he tells how the appointment of Thomas Tuchel changed his life: “When Tuchel arrived as manager and gave me a chance, it was a new life for me. In fact, he immediately made something that I think a lot of managers could learn from. It had nothing to do with tactics. He just came up to me and said, ‘Toni, tell me about yourself’.”
Rüdiger says his aggressiveness and hunger stem from growing up in Berlin-Neukölln: “I was playing so hard on the concrete courts that all the older kids started calling me ‘Rambo’.” “When Tuchel gave me a chance, I was so motivated that I was never going to return to the bench, he wrote. I had made the decision to give myself 200% for this club, for this crest – despite everything that has been said about me. For me, after everything I went through, the Champions League was just the icing on the cake.”
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