BT Sport pundit Rio Ferdinand has said that Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger is currently the best centre-back in the Premier League.
When asked for his opinion on the German international before Chelsea’s game against Juventus last night, Ferdinand agreed that Rudiger should be ranked as number one, followed closely by Manchester City’s Ruben Dias:
“I think Dias last season was the best overall, but since Tuchel’s come, I think he’s been the most commanding centre-back in the league. Bearing in mind he’s come from the wilderness under the previous manager Frank Lampard, he just wasn’t flavour of the month under Frank and that’s fine, the character to come back in the team and become an integral member of this team [is impressive]. One of the main reasons for them going and winning the Champions League last season was because of him. Without him, I don’t think they’d have done it.”
Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk doesn’t even get a mention by Ferdinand, which is not surprising in some respects, considering the Dutchman was out injured for the best part of nine months.
However, the 30-year-old has been excellent at the start of this season, and you would think that Ferdinand would caveat his response to the question he was asked by saying he still rates van Dijk.
The Netherlands captain hasn’t looked rusty this campaign, despite his long injury absence and, while he wasn’t at his best against Brentford last weekend, you would back him to put in an imperious performance versus City this weekend.