Tuchel confident Rudiger will stay at Chelsea

Thomas Tuchel has insisted he remains confident that Antonio Rudiger will stay at Chelsea.

Speaking on Friday afternoon, the Blues boss also played down speculation over Romelu Lukaku’s future and said there was a “very high probability” that Cesar Azpilicueta will stay now a clause in the captain’s contract enabling the club to extend his deal by a year has been activated.

But Andreas Christensen appears to be on his way out of Stamford Bridge.

The contracts of Christensen and Rudiger expire this summer and the sanctions placed on Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich mean the club cannot currently negotiate new deals.

Barcelona appear to have agreed to sign Christensen and reports claim the Catalan giants have spoken to Rudiger’s brother, who also acts as the German defender’s agent.


Asked if he was concerned about reports that Barca were in talks with the Rudiger camp, Tuchel said: “If it’s true, yes. I would try to meet him if I was in any other club.”

However, Tuchel added: “Still he’s our player and I still think we have a good chance that he stays our player once things are solved for us.

“But the situation is the situation. At the moment our hands are tied. We cannot speak to him, we cannot offer him (a contract) and we cannot negotiate with him and his agent.

“So, fair enough – if it’s true – that he listens to other offers. That’s the way things go. But I’m still confident.”

Meanwhile, reports in Italy continue to link striker Lukaku with a return to his former club Inter Milan.

“We don’t reflect on it. The situation at the moment is that we cannot sell and cannot buy, so in this moment we don’t even need to think about it,” Tuchel said.

“Romelu still plays a big part – not the part that he maybe wants to play and I totally understand that.

“But I feel him very motivated, very strong in training and very much involved. He is a winner and will stay a winner and will stay important for us.

“There’s no space for being distracted and we need all the players to be focused.”

But Tuchel appeared to be much less bullish on the issue of Christensen, who is expected to be a Barcelona player next season.

“We’ve heard the rumours. I have no confirmation,” he said.

“I did not speak to Andreas about it at the moment. But we heard the same rumours.”