In his latest article for the Fancast, @Nickstroudley reveals his admiration for Antonio Rudiger.
Toni Rudiger… I bloody well love you.
When Antonio Rudiger signed for us for £34 million, there weren’t too many people rolling out the red carpet (remember his infamous ‘back of the shop’ unveiling?). Back in August, following the Arsenal fixture, Drunken Castles (The Sunday Times) referred to him as ‘often looking like the discount option’. What a load of bulls**t.
This season we’ve seen what an excellent player ‘Big Tone’ (as a couple of my CFC mates call him) is. And at just 25 years old, you can easily forget that he’s only a couple of years older than Christensen and Loftus-Cheek.
As a defender, he has a lot of attributes that fans admire. A large portion of aggression, fire and passion, served with a side of clumsiness. But far more than that, he has grown into a tactically astute central defender, who has arguably been our top defensive performer of this campaign. Dare I say that there was even a touch of JT about his bullet header against United?…
Off the pitch, he seems refreshingly normal (yet very entertaining) and also, importantly, a thoroughly nice chap. The recent video of him with the kids at the Foundation event was fantastic to see; he genuinely looked happy to be there.
We’ve found some more people who just love @ToniRuediger!
With news emerging that he could sign a new contract, I can’t help but think he could be a mainstay of the Chelsea defence for years to come. Paired with a ball-playing partner, he seems the perfect fit for the style of football that the ‘new’ Chelsea are aspiring to. Yes, we aren’t the most rock-solid defensive unit at the moment, but the one man I can definitely see an incredibly bright future for is ‘Big Tone’ Rudiger.
Written by Nick Stroudley – @NickStroudley