Chelsea star Antonio Rudiger has confirmed talks are in place over a possible contract renewal and reassured supporters that he is ‘happy’ at the club.
Rudiger, 28, is out of contract at the end of the season and therefore free to talk to foreign teams from as early as January over a potential move away from Stamford Bridge.
Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Liverpool are all believed to be monitoring the situation and could make moves for the Germany international, who played a key role on Chelsea’s route to Champions League glory last season.
However, speaking to The Guardian, the former Stuttgart and Roma centre-back gave his biggest hint yet that he sees his long-term future in west London.
‘The most important thing is that I feel happy here,’ Rudiger said.
‘I think if people look at it, they can see I’m happy. About the contract situation, I talk with the club. This is for nobody’s ears.
‘It was how I said it would be after the Euros – there would be talks. There was a talk between Marina [Granovskaia, a Chelsea director] and my agent.
‘We have the situation where we are at now and I have nothing to do with all the speculation. This is not in my mind.
‘I’m focused on what I’m doing because this is why I wake up every morning.’
Chelsea have placed Jules Kounde, Matthijs de Ligt and Pau Torres on their transfer wishlist as they prepare for the potential departures of both Rudiger and Andreas Christensen.
However, Thomas Tuchel remains hopeful of keeping hold of fellow countryman Rudiger, who has reportedly been offered £140,000-a-week to stay on at Stamford Bridge.
I hope that they find solutions, but it’s not only between coaches and players, and what we wish for and that’s why it’s between the club, the players and the agent at the moment.
‘We hope that they find the solution and everything I can say, he plays excellent, and since a long time very consistent, on a very high level.
‘I feel him very calm and focused, and it’s not a distraction for him,’ the Chelsea head coach told reporters last month.
‘So everything is in place, and give things the time they need. Sometimes it needs a bit longer, sometimes things are very fast.
There’s no news from my side, and I think that Toni feels very, very good at Chelsea, he feels very respected by his team-mates and he feels the importance that he has in the team and in the squad.
‘That’s well deserved because he delivers, he feels the love from the supporters when he plays. He’s in the strongest league in Europe, in a big club, so not many reasons to change that.’
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