Former Chelsea midfielder Emmanuel Petit has urged the club to meet Antonio Rudiger’s demands and extend the German’s deal at the club.
Bayern Munich have been heavily linked with a move for the 28-year-old centre-back and reports in Germany on Wednesday suggested the Bundesliga champions have the financial muscle to double his current £5million-per-year wages.
However, that same report also claimed the Germany international – whose deal in the region of £100,000 per week expires in June – wants to stay at Stamford Bridge beyond the end of the season if the European champions will up his pay.
Emmanuel Petit has urged Chelsea to meet the wage demands of Antonio Rudiger (above)
Former Blues star Petit (above) insists it will cost them at least £30m to sign a replacement
And speaking to bookmakers.co.uk, Frenchman Petit urged the west London side to ‘just give him the money’ having opened talks, insisting it will cost them at least £30m to find a replacement.
‘If he leaves, it would be a real pity for Chelsea,’ Petit said. ‘If I remember correctly before Tuchel came in he was on the bench and wasn’t playing. Now he looks like one of the best defenders around.
‘He could leave on a free and Chelsea would have to spend a minimum of £30m to find a new defender of his level, and there’s never a guarantee a buy will work out.
‘If he asks for two more years, just give him the money.’
Petit (centre) claims Rudiger reminds him of ‘crazy defenders’ he used to play with like Martin Keown (right)
The ex-Stuttgart defender has been a revelation at Chelsea since Thomas Tuchel’s arrival and was instrumental in their Champions League success by being an integral part of their rock-solid defence.
And Petit, 51, insists Rudiger reminds him the ‘crazy defenders’ he used to play with at Arsenal, including Sportsmail columnist Martin Keown.
‘This guy is a survivor,’ the 1998 World Cup winner added. ‘Since Tuchel has been the manager he’s been one of the top defenders in world football.
‘He reminds me of the crazy defenders I used to play with back in the day like Martin Keown.
Julian Nagelsmann’s Bayern Munich have been heavily linked with a move for the German
‘Those types of guys were always really tough on other players, and playing against them was both a physical and mental battle because they could make you feel bad on the pitch.
‘I think Rudiger is similar, and it must be very tough to be on the pitch with him because you can disappear very quickly. He always plays the ball but he also plays the players and strikers know that and it can be intimidating.
‘Sometimes he tries to destroy strikers, and I don’t really like that side of his game. But for me, the priority of a defender is to scare strikers.
‘People might not understand that but it’s true, you have to scare them to try and stop them from scoring goals. For me, Rudiger is one of the hardest defenders in the world.’
Petit insists Rudiger is intimidating because he ‘plays the ball as well as the players’