Paul Merson believes the Chelsea star ‘does not love the club’ and expects angry fan reaction

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 19: Antonio Rudiger of Chelsea celebrates after scoring their third goal of the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 19, 2021 in London, England.  (Photo by James Gill - Danehouse / Getty Images)

Antonio Rudiger rejected a new contract offer from Chelsea (Photo: Getty)

Paul Merson feels that Antonio Rudiger could receive a bad reception from Chelsea fans after deciding to leave the club.

The talented defender will leave the Blues at the end of the season as it has not agreed a new deal and is expected to sign for Real Madrid.

Thomas Tuchel has made it clear that he is disappointed to lose the German, and the former Arsenal star Merson feels that Rudiger clearly does not love the club, otherwise he would have stayed.

“Antonio Rudiger is the player Chelsea could not afford to lose, but he clearly did not love the club enough to stay,” Merson told the Daily Star.

‘He risks the fans’ anger now because he rejects a lot of money and leaves them in the lurch, but let’s be honest: it’s been in the cards for a long, long time.

‘I called this a month ago. I do not think Rudiger ever intended to sign; not after he was frozen out by Frank Lampard.

Football - Champions League - Quarterfinals - Second Match - Real Madrid v Chelsea - Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid, Spain - April 12, 2022 Chelsea's Antonio Rudiger celebrates their second goal REUTERS / Juan Medina

Antonio Rudiger appears to be joining Real Madrid (Photo: Reuters)

‘I know a lot has changed since then. Thomas Tuchel came in, brought him back to the team and they won the Champions League. ‘

Despite becoming a key player under Tuchel and Chelsea offering him a new contract, Rudiger is looking for a new challenge away from the Premier League.

Rudiger delivered an almost flawless display in a 1-1 draw away to Manchester United on Thursday, but Merson feels he can get a cold reception from Blues fans when Chelsea next play at home against Wolves next Saturday.

“But I think he had already decided. His contract was already running out and other clubs would have already expressed interest,” Merson continued.

‘You do not wait all the time, refuse to sign, lose all the money you would have gotten by signing on improved terms, just to turn around and stay. It’s serious money he’s turned down.

– He would have been the most well-paid defender in the club’s history. But he does not love the club, does he? Or he had become.

And he’s an incredible defender. Thiago Silva helps him, but I also think he helps Thiago Silva. They are so good together in a tree.

– It will be interesting to see how the fans get to be now when he plays at Stamford Bridge. I do not see that they are so happy for him. “

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