“You can’t imagine a successful Chelsea team without him” – Andy Townsend picks out out one Blues star for praise

It truly is Antonio Rudiger week at Chelsea.

The last 7 days have seen him showered with praise for more good performances, and for generally being a key player ever since Thomas Tuchel took over.

There’s also the question of his soon to expire contract in the news.

TalkSport commentator Andy Townsend picked him out for special credit after the hard fought win over Zenit St Petersburg last night.

“You can’t imagine a successful Chelsea team without him.” Townsend raved.

“He’s got those inspirational qualities, he gets people off their seats as a centre-half! There aren’t too many that do that,” the former Chelsea man continued.

“Every now and again he goes crazy and tries to hit one, blazing it out onto the King’s Road.

“But he’s just got that about him. He wants it. He wants to make something happen for the team when it’s all gone a bit quiet.

“And defensively, very few players get the better of him.”

Those comments are typical of the kind that Rudiger’s been getting for some time now. He’s really shown the ability of a top level centre half, and there’s a strong argument that he’s been the best in the league this season – and perhaps this whole calendar year.

The only player who can really hold a torch to him is his teammate Andreas Christensen, who has had a similarly impressive turnaround.