Chelsea has confirmed that Antonio Rudiger has signed for Real Madrid on a free transfer.
During the closing weeks of the season, it was an open secret that Rudiger would be ending a five-year spell at Stamford Bridge to sign for Los Blancos.
Head coach Thomas Tuchel revealed that the Germany international had held conversations with him behind the scenes to reveal that he would not be extending his contract past the end of the 2021-22 campaign.
With Real Madrid competing in the Champions League final last weekend, it was known that a formal announcement would not be made until after that fixture.
Yesterday, the Premier League club confirmed that the 29-year-old would be departing for pastures new, praising the influence of the player in an official statement.
It read: “We bid farewell to Antonio Rudiger as he departs Stamford Bridge with his Chelsea contract expiring, bringing to a close his five trophy-filled years with the club.
“The German defender has left the Blues to join Real Madrid, having played a huge role in our successes in recent seasons. Rudiger lifted the FA Cup, Champions League, Europa League, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup with Chelsea, playing a crucial role in all those triumphs at the heart of our defence.
“The 29-year-old was also an important figure in the dressing room with his leadership and passion, while his dedication and desire to win never faltered, even when it became clear he would be leaving the club this summer.
Rudiger’s disappointment was obvious when defeats to Real Madrid in the Champions League and to Liverpool in the Carabao Cup and FA Cup finals denied him the chance to say goodbye with one more piece of silverware.”