Rio Ferdinand has urged Chelsea FC to move quickly to tie Antonio Rudiger to a new contract as the clock continues to tick down on his current deal.
The German defender has been one of the Blues’ key players since Thomas Tuchel was brought in as Frank Lampard’s successor back in January.
Rudiger has been a constant starter in Tuchel’s team and he once again underlined his importance to the Blues on Saturday when he scored the opening goal in Chelsea FC’s 3-0 victory at Leicester City in the Premier League.
The 28-year-old’s fine form at the back has been one of the main reasons why Chelsea FC have only conceded four goals in the top flight this season, helping them to lead the way at the top of the table.
Rudiger’s future at the south west London club remains far from certain, however, as his current deal with the Blues is due to expire at the end of the current campaign.
Former Manchester United and England defender Ferdinand believes that Rudiger is fully deserving of a new and improved contract at Stamford Bridge and he has urged Chelsea FC to move quickly to get the deal done.
“Well, I think they’ve got to pay him so he is feeling that he’s getting paid what he feels he should be, which is at the upper echelons of the squad,” Ferdinand said of Rudiger on BT Sport on Saturday.
“Wherever the highest earners are, I think he sees himself as part of that.
“If you look in this squad of players you wouldn’t want to lose, for a number of week or a number of games, he’d be one of the first on your list in terms of you’d want to keep him in there.
“Because his influence, he’s aggressive, he sets the tone a lot of the time, and when they need to shut the door at the back he’s normally the one who puts his foot in where it hurts.”
Meanwhile, Tuchel felt that his side could have been even more clinical in front of goal and wanted to see his team end the contest earlier at the King Power Stadium, with substitute Christian Pulisic netting in the second half after N’Golo Kante added to Rudiger’s opener.
“We could have finished the game with a third one earlier,” said Tuchel after the game.
“There are still things to improve, technical things, decision making and conversion from our chances. But it was a good performance and we needed it, to get a deserved win and a clean sheet and we did deserve it.
“I think we played a good game, a good away game, we have an excellent result so it’s a good mix, we created a lot of chances and half-chances, were a bit unlucky with the offside decisions, but I’m happy we created and never stopped creating and that was the key.”
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