Jerome Boateng: Chelsea FC star is one of the top five best in Europe

Jerome Boateng has heaped praise on Antonio Rudiger following his impressive recent form for Chelsea FC

Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel (Photo: Screengrab)

Jerome Boateng has described Antonio Rudiger as one of the top five defenders in European football as the speculation about the German’s future at Chelsea FC continues to mount.

Rudiger has been in excellent form for the south west London side since Thomas Tuchel was brought in to replace Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge back in January.

The 28-year-old centre-half has scored two goals in 14 Premier League games for the Blues so far this season and has helped Chelsea FC to maintain the joint-best defensive record in the top flight along with Manchester City this term.

However, the defender’s situation at Stamford Bridge has been becoming an increasing source of uncertainty as the clock ticks down on his contract. As things stand, Rudiger’s current deal is set to expire in the summer and he would be free to open talks with foreign clubs about a move in the new year.

Now, Lyon defender Boateng has heaped praise on Rudiger, claiming that the centre-half is the best German defender around right now and backing him to make the right decision about his future.

Speaking in an interview with Goal, Boateng said: “Toni Rudiger. We are good friends and we talk often. I’m very happy for him that he has developed so well at Chelsea.

“When we remember where he was a year ago, sometimes on the bench, sometimes in the stands. And now he’s a guaranteed starter and playing at a world-class level because he believed in himself and remained patient.

“For me, he is currently the best German defender, and definitely in the top five at his spot in Europe.

“I don’t have any [advice] for him, he’s big enough and will know what’s best for him. I wish him clear ideas when he makes his decision, but that will be the case.”

Liverpool FC and England legend John Barnes recently lavished praise on Rudiger following his “sensational” form for the Blues lately, describing him as Chelsea FC’s most consistent player this season.

“He has been sensational, he has also improved in coming forward,” Barnes said last week. “Because the way he wants to play, as much as he is a good defender, he wasn’t doing this as much for Chelsea.

“But now, he is coming forward, because of everyone is working hard behind him if he loses the ball. For me, he has been their best player, their most consistent player.”

Rudiger, who has already notched up 20 appearances in all competitions for Chelsea FC this season, will be hoping to start when the Blues host Leeds United at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

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