Antonio Rudiger has explained that although Barcelona came knocking for him in the summer, he couldn’t turn down an offer from Real Madrid.
- Rudiger left Chelsea in June 2022
- Defender revealed interest from Barca
- Chose Madrid due to superstar roster
WHAT HAPPENED? Rudiger says that many clubs made contact with him in the summer after his contract with Chelsea came to an end, including Madrid’s arch-rivals. The German insists he never considered a switch to Camp Nou, however, with Santiago Bernabeu always his first choice due to the club’s star power.
WHAT THEY SAID: “Obviously there were more teams, but I only considered two, Chelsea and Real Madrid,” Rudiger explained to Spanish outlet AS. “They [Barca] knocked on my door, they did. But for me it wasn’t a possibility.
“As I told you before, Madrid for me wasn’t even a dream because it seemed like something unattainable. If you look at the names that have played here: [Zinedine] Zidane, Ronaldo [Nazario], Cristiano [Ronaldo]. To have the chance to play with [Luka] Modric, [Toni] Kroos or [Karim] Benzema… It was hard to say no.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: While not always a guaranteed starter like he was at Chelsea, Rudiger has still featured heavily for a Real Madrid team currently defending La Liga and Champions League honours. As club football breaks for the World Cup, Los Blancos currently sit in second place in La Liga, two points off Barcelona in top spot.
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WHAT NEXT FOR RUDIGER? Rudiger was called up to Hansi Flick’s squad to feature in Qatar, as Germany look to redeem themselves after a disappointing group stage exit as holders in 2018. Their first match comes against Japan on November 23.