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I doubt they can fill Rudiger’s boots – Merson gives verdict on two Chelsea targets

Arsenal legend, Paul Merson, has insisted that Antonio Rudiger will be a ‘massive miss’ at Chelsea next season and doubts the Blues targets, Kalidou Koulibaly and Jules Kounde, are suitable replacements for the new Real Madrid defender.

Rudiger completed his move to Real Madrid on Thursday, signing a four-year deal at Santiago Bernabeu after joining the LaLiga champions on a free transfer.

Chelsea and manager Thomas Tuchel attempted to convince Rudiger to extend his stay at Stamford Bridge, but the Germany international decided to end his five-year association with the West London club.

And Merson believes Rudiger’s departure is a major ‘worry’ for Chelsea ahead of next season.

He also questioned whether Koulibaly and Kounde could ‘fill his boots’ at Chelsea.

“Antonio Rudiger has been absolutely outstanding for Chelsea. I can’t remember him having a bad game if I am being honest,” Merson told Sportskeeda.

“He has been consistently brilliant in the Premier League this season. Rudiger is going to be a massive miss for Thomas Tuchel next season.

“He is going to be a hard one to replace, and I am not sure if the likes of Kalidou Koulibaly and Jules Kounde can fill his boots. If there is a worry for Chelsea this year, it is finding Rudiger’s replacement.”

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