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‘Business aside, I’m not a robot’ — Rudiger gives reason for leaving Chelsea

‘Business aside, I’m not a robot’ — Rudiger gives reason for leaving Chelsea
May 20
20:43 2022

Antonio Rudiger, the German professional footballer, has confirmed he will leave Chelsea as a free agent this summer when his contract comes to an end.

In a lengthy farewell letter published in the Players’ Tribune, the 29-year-old Champions League winner also shed light on why no new contract was agreed at Chelsea.

Amid reports that the German defender is preparing to join Real Madrid this summer, Rudiger said his impending exit from Chelsea was a business-related decision.

He said a lack of communication over a new deal was responsible for his departure. While saying “I am not a robot,” the defender added that after receiving the first offer from the club, they went silent on him for about six months.


He also touched on various aspects of his time at Stamford Bridge, including his brotherhood with the likes of N’Golo Kante, Hakim Ziyech, and Kurt Zouma.

Rudiger also addressed the sanctions that were placed on Chelsea as a result of Roman Abramovich’s relationship with Vladimir Putin following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“I leave this club with a heavy heart. It has meant everything to me,” he said.


“Even this season, with all the complications, has been enjoyable. Football is football. We are blessed to play a game for a living that we would play for free anyway. In fact, when the financial restrictions were being rumored, we were all laughing about having to take a bus or a smaller plane or whatever to the matches. I mean, a small plane?

“Unfortunately, my contract negotiations had already started to get difficult last fall. Business is business, but when you don’t hear any news from the club from August to January, the situation becomes complicated. After the first offer, there was a long gap of just nothing.

“We’re not robots, you know? You cannot wait for months with so much uncertainty about your future. Obviously, no one saw the sanctions coming, but in the end, other big clubs were showing interest, and I had to make a decision. I will leave it at that, because business aside, I have nothing bad to say about this club.”

Rudiger talked about his upbringing in Berlin suburbs and an eye-opening trip to Sierra Leone, his maternal home.


The German international also detailed incidents of abuse and love from Chelsea’s fans.

“Chelsea will always be in my heart. London will always be my home. I came here alone, and now I have a wife and two beautiful kids. I also have a new brother for life named Kova. I have an FA Cup, a Europa League and a Champions League medal. And of course, I have hundreds of memories that will stay with me forever,” he said.

“There is hatred in the football world, for sure. That’s a fact. I have experienced the worst of it. But there is also a lot of joy, too. At Chelsea, I experienced both extremes.

“Yes, I heard the abuse. But I also felt the love. At the end of the day, the light was stronger than the darkness. For that, I will always be Chelsea.”


Rudiger signed for around £27 million in 2017. He has so far featured in 202 games for Chelsea, winning five titles including the UEFA Champions League, Europa League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA World Club Cup, and the English FA Cup.



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