Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger has revealed the strict nature of Thomas Tuchel’s managerial reign at Stamford Bridge.
The German coach replaced Frank Lampard at the helm in January and has had an impressive start to life in West London.
In his 10 games in charge, the Blues are unbeaten and have conceded just twice. This run of form has seen them move back into the top four in the Premier League.
During this time, they have also progressed to the FA Cup quarter-finals and secured a 1-0 first-leg advantage in their Champions League Round of 16 tie with Atletico Madrid.
Rudiger has started all but one of those 10 games since his fellow countryman’s arrival. He has made the left-sided centre-back position his own in the back three that Tuchel has opted to deploy.
Prior to this, he had found himself largely on the bench under Lampard.
Now, the 28-year-old has explained that he and his teammates must follow the instructions they are given, or they will face the consequences – as shown by Callum Hudson-Odoi’s removal in the draw with Southampton only 30 minutes after he had come on as a half-time substitute.
“It’s all details, details,” Rudiger told The Sun. “If you don’t do what he tells you, you will find yourself on the outside. His message is just always to play our football. Like we are, to press high.
“He is making us feel that we should always stay calm, never worry, and he advises us exactly what to do. And this is what we are doing.”
Chelsea’s 1-0 away win against Liverpool on Thursday lifted them into the Champions League places once more. But they face another top-four rival in Monday night’s home match against Everton.
The Toffees are one point and one place behind their opponents in the table with a game in hand.
Rudiger added: “It’s game by game but it is all in our hands. Top four can happen but it depends all on us.”
Huge Haaland bid still on the cards
Meanwhile, Chelsea remain undeterred in their ambitious bid to sign Erling Haaland this summer despite claims the Borussia Dortmund striker is not interested in a move to Stamford Bridge.
The Blues have placed Haaland at the top of their transfer target list in preparation for another summer of heavy investment, the PA news agency understands.
Reports in Germany last week claimed Haaland would only consider a move to six clubs in Europe, with Chelsea not on that list.
Blues bosses are understood to be unfazed however, and will press on with their long-term plan to try to lure one of the world’s top talents to Stamford Bridge this summer.