The Chelsea fans who were at Stamford Bridge were surprised when the team sheets were issued and their German defender, often the first name on Thomas Tuchel’s side, was absent.
Rudiger has been in the news all season for his form and his contract situation, with reports that Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and PSG have all made attempts to sign him on the free. Chelsea’s sale situation has not done his case any good with the club running out of time to make him an offer.
The European champions will now hope that his absence does affect their fine form as they look to record back to back victories following the FA Cup win against Crystal Palace over the weekend.
The Blues also put up a remarkable performance against Real Madrid where they took a 3-0 lead before two late goals from Madrid ensured it was the 13-time record holders that progressed to the last four to face Manchester City.
Thomas Tuchel has already won the Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup earlier in the season and their win against Crystal Palace over the weekend also means that they will have a chance to add the FA Cup to it but they will have to get past Liverpool to do that.
Jurgen Klopp’s men are looking to win the quadruple and they have already beat Chelsea at Wembley to lift the Carabao Cup already, they are the in-form side and will go into the FA Cup final as the favourites.
But Chelsea are built for big games and they will take respite from the fact that they were also underdogs for last season’s Champions League but managed to beat Pep Guardiola’s men in Porto.