When Chelsea signed Antonio Rudiger from Roma in the summer of 2017, little did we know that we’ve gotten a rock in defence.
The Germany international didn’t start out as a key player, but he fought his way through and entered Antonio Conte’s first team, and he has proven to be reliable in defence.
The 24-year-old has also been a key player for new manager Maurizio Sarri. Sarri has got Chelsea playing beautifully and the team has changed style from being defensive to a more attacking style.
Rudiger has been a rock at the back and has adapted seamlessly to Sarri-ball demands. He has admitted that he likes the team’s new style of play and that he has the speed to recover whenever he goes up to attack.
He told Chelsea Magazine: “Maurizio Sarri likes to have a bit of possession as well, but this kind of football, pushing up and attacking – I like that, because I have the abilities to do that. I have the speed to get back.”
While Rudiger has been great at the back, Eden Hazard has been the team’s shining light in attack. The Belgian has scored eight goals in ten games this season, and Rudiger has urged other Chelsea players to step up and score goals.
Rudiger told Standard Sport: “We need to learn to kill matches. It’s not only on Eden’s shoulders. We need the other players to help him with scoring.
“He has been doing his job very well again, but the other guys must score too – Giroud, Morata, Willian have to score. As a team all of us have to provide more goals, the defenders as well.
“At the end of the day the best scorers are Hazard and Pedro, but with the quality of players we have on the pitch, it’s (the lack of goals from elsewhere) not too good.”
Hazard has shown his importance to the team this season with the Belgian scoring six goals and providing two assists in just seven Premier League games.