Antonio Rudiger has been linked with multiple clubs around Europe over the past few weeks, with sides hovering for a potential free transfer.

Given the defender’s Chelsea contract expires at the end of the current season, the opportunity to get the Germany international as a free agent was a welcome one for some of the continent’s biggest outfits.

However, there were also repeat claims that Rudiger was asking for far more in wages than any club, including Chelsea, were willing to match, and whilst tentative interest was said to continue, this caused a major issue and dampened things down.

The defender himself has this week spoken to SportBild, and when asked about his situation, and about transfer rumours, said: “In the case of transfer rumours, it is well known that the media always like to add a little more salt and pepper to make the headline a bit more explosive and bigger.

“Accordingly, you will not hear from me until the day of the final decision. We still have a lot to do at Chelsea this season, and my full focus at the moment is on the City game. My agent is currently taking care of everything else.”

Despite that, it’s been clear agents have been at work, and the whole thing hasn’t been an invention of the European media.

Bild’s Christian Falk has now stated Rudiger ‘would like to stay’ at Chelsea beyond the end of his contract, and after a disappointing offer from the Blues, the parties involved are now in ‘better talks’.