Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger has made it clear that Thomas Tuchel played a key role in keeping him at Stamford Bridge when he was considering his future last year.
The Germany international had fallen out of favour under previous Chelsea manager Frank Lampard, but ended up reviving his Blues career when Tuchel took over last January.
Rudiger ended up becoming a hugely important part of Chelsea’s Champions League-winning squad, and fans will be hoping there’s still a chance he can end up putting his faith in Tuchel again and committing his future to the club.
As things stand, it’s not looking too good in terms of Rudiger’s future at Chelsea, with the 28-year-old set to be a free agent at the end of this season.
A recent report from the Guardian suggested it was looking increasingly likely that Rudiger could move to Real Madrid on a free transfer, but perhaps there’s still reason to believe that Tuchel’s presence at Chelsea could again be significant.
“Yeah [I was close to leaving], the way things were going for myself but also for the team,” Rudiger told Sky Sports.
“But in the winter period I was not keen to leave, to be honest. It was more in the summer period where I wanted to leave.
“But Thomas Tuchel came and the rest is history. He opened a new door… he played a big role.”
In fairness, it’s hard to justify leaving Chelsea for Real Madrid right now, even if the Spanish giants are a historically big name.
The Premier League looks stronger than ever right now, with so many of the world’s best players and managers now based in England, while La Liga and other major European leagues show signs of major decline.
If Rudiger wants to keep on winning major trophies, he’d surely be more likely to fulfil those ambitions in west London than in Madrid.