There’s not too much doubt that Antonio Rudiger has been one of Chelsea’s most consistent performers this season.
He is a trusted general for Thomas Tuchel and it’s easy to see why.
The German’s physicality and athleticism make him the perfect modern day defender.
However, that doesn’t mean he can set his own price when it comes to transfer and salary renegotiations.
There’s nothing worse than a footballer that is so full of his own self-importance that he believes he can hold any club to ransom.
Real Madrid have seemingly backed away from a deal that at one stage appeared almost certain to happen.
Though the reasons for the same haven’t been made public, reading between the lines, the player’s own demands have to have played some part.
Why else would Los Blancos, who have money to spend and want a top-class centre-back, decide not to spend their hard-earned on the German international?
The player has told Chelsea that he wants a contract that would work out to an astonishing £45m over the period of the deal.
If that contract were to be for five years, it would land the German £187,500 per week. Far in excess of the £135,000 per week that Rudiger turned his nose up at.
The bottom line for the Blues is whether they feel the player is worth the money.
His performances would suggest he is, if that’s the going rate, but his attitude and greed casts him in a bad light.
Rudiger needs to tread very carefully indeed over the next few weeks.