Tuchel favourite vulnerable to winter exit as Chelsea revisit old ground

Date published: Tuesday 14th September 2021 2:41 - Neil Foster

Jules Kounde, Luuk de Jong, and Nemanja Gudelj, Sevilla, Europa League win

Reports claim Chelsea may look to sell Antonio Rudiger in January to ‘accelerate’ a move for Sevilla defender Jules Kounde.

The Blues made no secret of their desire to sign Kounde during the summer transfer window. It seemed as though things were progressing until the Spanish outfit decided to raise the asking price to around £77m. Kounde was reportedly ‘furious’ a move did not materialise.

Sevilla boss Julien Lopetegui revealed the reason why the deal failed to happen.

“Kounde didn’t join Chelsea because our Sevilla board decided it was the right thing to do, based on the value of the offers,” he said at the time. “For me it’s positive – he’ll perform again at top level.”

A recent report suggested the west Londoners were refusing to take no for an answer and will keep pursuing the France international. It has been said the man to make way could be Rudiger.


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The Germany stopper was heavily linked with a summer move away from Stamford Bridge. Tottenham were keen, with the former Roma man now in the final 12 months of his contract.

There were rumours of a new deal being readied, with the player free to negotiate with foreign clubs in January. Thomas Tuchel has given the powerful centre-half plenty of action despite no news on a fresh contract.

Rudiger has played every minute of Chelsea’s 2021-2022 Premier League campaign to date. That seems to suggest the German tactician views him in his long-term plans.

Sport1 recently said ‘everything is open’ regarding his future at the club. La Colina de Nervion (via Sport Witness) back up those claims but state how much Kounde wants to join Chelsea.

Abramovich has Kounde funds tucked away

It has recently been reported that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich recognises how important signing Kounde will be to the club. And, with that in mind, the Russian has put aside a large chunk of the transfer budget to facilitate a move in January.

That would almost certainly mean Rudiger’s exit despite his stellar start to the season. And the outlet adds that Rudiger’s possible exit ‘could accelerate a new attack’ for the Frenchman.

Antonio Rudiger celebrates Chelsea goal against Villarreal

Spanish outlet AS have linked the inability to secure a summer move to Chelsea’s failed attempt to sign Dani Alves in 2007. They suggests, per Sport Witness, the defender, ‘at the moment, is imitating almost all the steps’ of Alves.

READ MORE: Chelsea stalwart knocks back transfer concerns with defiant statement

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