Chelsea’s season turned when Thomas Tuchel took over and switched to a back 3. That really suited Antonio Rudiger, who had been frozen out under Frank Lampard after some shaky performances.
At the time, there were rumours that Rudiger had been influential in getting the manager who squeezed him out sacked. He’s always denied this, and there is no real evidence beyond nasty whispers.
Speaking on the club website about his background and career so far, Rudi made a point of showing that people who judge him by his aggressive style on the pitch are getting the wrong end of the stick.
“People like to judge very quickly based on what they only see on the pitch because that’s the only way people know me,” Rudiger explained in an interview on the club website.
“This is not really something that bothers me too much because I know who I am and that’s the most important thing,” he continued.
“Off the field I am the person who loves to make jokes, who wants a good vibe around. When I enter the pitch, that all changes. When I play, of course I want to win and I channel everything into football.”
It’s a mistake many people make – players are not who they appear on the pitch, and a quick watch of any behind the scenes videos or reading any article like this will show you that his hard-tackling, no-nonsense style is just for 90 minutes.
He’s played so well and won a Champions League for Chelsea – surely there can’t be many haters left.