Antonio Rudiger

Antonio Rudiger admits to 'sadness' at Chelsea sacking Thomas Tuchel

Michael Graham
Thomas Tuchel and Antonio Rudiger come together after Chelsea game
Thomas Tuchel and Antonio Rudiger come together after Chelsea game / Catherine Ivill/GettyImages

Former Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger says he was ‘sad’ when he learned the Stamford Bridge club had sacked Thomas Tuchel.

Rudiger left Chelsea himself last summer, joining Real Madrid on a free transfer. He enjoyed good times under Tuchel at Stamford Bridge, though, which included winning a UEFA Champions League winners’ medal in 2021.

Tuchel was dismissed earlier this month by new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly over what the American described as a lack of a shared vision for the club, but Rudiger believes his compatriot deserves to be remembered fondly for what he achieved at Stamford Bridge.

"I was surprised, it was a sad day for me,” Rudiger told SPORT1 of when he heard that Tuchel had been sacked by Chelsea.

“When you look at where we came from and where he took us, he made the impossible possible. But that's football, you know how it works."

While Rudiger apparently remains a big fan of his former manager, it appears Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has made an even bigger impression on him.

"I had only been in our new house with my family for a few hours – we were just barbecuing – and the doorbell suddenly rang,” Rudiger recalled. "I opened it and Carlo Ancelotti was just standing in front of me. A wow moment.

“He sat down at the table with us, ate with us and got to know my family. [He was] very normal, very down-to-earth. He was there for two hours, we talked about everything.

"I’ll be honest, I’ve never experienced anything like it, no coach has ever done something like that for me.

“After a few months with him, I have to say: When it comes to dealing with players, Ancelotti is untouchable. Don Carlo, a coaching legend – he was already collecting Champions League titles when I was a child.”