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Rudiger - Is he really a defensive leader?

Photo Credit: Planet Football Many Chelsea fans have this strong belief that Rudiger's a world-class defender and currently the be...

Photo Credit: Planet Football

Many Chelsea fans have this strong belief that Rudiger's a world-class defender and currently the best Chelsea defender in the squad. However, is this really true? Was he flawless last season?
Yes, he is very capable of having a stellar game but far too often he'll produce an absolute howler of a performance that will be detrimental to the team.

The last few matches the issues from last season have slowly started to materialize yet again. 
  • Lapses in concentration 
  • Individual errors 
  • Lack of decision making in the build-up
This season he's added a new attribute which is yelling at his teammates unnecessarily when he is at times incapable of holding his own play. 

Let's have a quick look at 2 incidents from the Brighton match to further elaborate on some of these issues. 

On the 50th minute when the score was locked at 0-1 in Chelsea's favour, Rudiger shows zero urgencies to move the ball quickly in the build-up. 


He even saw Kepa directing the play from the back but he ignored him completely. Eventually, he waited on the ball far too long, attracted 3 Brighton players to press him deep in his half and ultimately opting to go long with a pass which was blocked by the incoming Brighton player. These are the type of plays that shifts the momentum to the opposition. Opposition starts believing again and builds up confidence. 

On the 84th minute, the equalizer came from an absolute screamer. However, this play would not have happened had Rudiger was successful in his clearance. 


The corner was whipped in and Rudiger completely mistimes his leap. 


As a supposed "world-class" player he should not be making such critical errors in front of his goal.


The ball eventually gets headed back in by the Brighton player. Consequently, Jahanbakhsh gets the equalizer with a brilliant over head shot. 

If Frank is going to rely on Rudiger to be our prime defender then he has to do a lot better than what he has been in the past few games. Sure, he is returning from a serious injury but Chelsea simply has no place such allowances anymore if top 4 in the PL is a realistic target. He has to improve his defending, ball-playing ability and overall attitude in the game. 


Written By: Miz Rahman
Twitter: @Miz9Rahman 






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