Chelsea will be desperate to regain their Premier League crown next season, but it won’t be easy. The Blues were well off the pace last season, and they’ll need a monumental improvement if they are to have any chance of catching Man City, Man Utd, Liverpool and co.
Still, they have the tools to do it, they proved that in the 2016/17 season. In fact, they have more tools now than they did then – with several players moving to Stamford Bridge over the last year.
One such example was Antonio Rudiger, who enjoyed a stellar start to life in England. Towards the end of the campaign, especially, he really looked at home in the Chelsea defence, and there’s an argument to be had to suggest that the German should be at the centre of the Blues’ defence if they are to regain their Premier League crown.
After all, Rudiger looks well suited to a role at the back, especially in England. He’s quick, he’s agile, he’s strong in the air, the German truly looks perfect for the English top flight. He also, significantly, is brilliant with the ball at his feet, and he’s comfortable dribbling or passing forward to create chances. In a side that often looks to play out from the back, that’s an invaluable trait.
First and foremost, though, at his core, he’s just a very solid defender.
Furthermore, by the end of the campaign, Rudiger really looked as though he had gotten used to playing in a back five, and so with a year under his belt, he could head into next season with a whole new level of significance.
Chelsea have lost some big defenders over the years. From John Terry to Ashley Cole, the Blues’ defence has been constantly changing over the last few years. However, in Rudiger, they’ve found a player worthy of taking on their respective crowns, and Chelsea must unleash him next season.