In every team, you need a Mr Reliable. Someone who can hold onto the ball, retain possession and keep everything under control. These players often go unnoticed, or worse still, they are lambasted for 'playing it safe' and being 'worse than a night out with Jesse Lingard'.
A top player makes even the most difficult parts of the job look very easy. Well, our Chelsea star makes the easy stuff look easy, like the true professional he is. What does that make him? Nothing short of a genius.
"Who cares? He's a defender, his job is to stop the ball going in, not knock it about at the back!"
Well you might be right. But unluckily for you, imaginary heckler, Rudiger also produced a stellar display at the back for the Blues. Possibly. Admittedly, Wolves did find a way through the Chelsea defence, but the ex-Roma man was not to blame - I promise.
Sarri's men eventually pulled level, when Eden Hazard drove home two minutes into stoppage time. We can only imagine what must be going through a player's mind in such an occasion, but I'm pretty sure it was along the lines of: "Do it for Rüdiger. Don't let his passing accuracy be for nothing."
And alas, one year later we find ourselves reminiscing over that magical occasion, when the 91st pass left the big German's foot. The entire crowd held its breath, and once again, just like the other 90, Rüdiger delivered. Five yards to the left, and safety. Magic.
Although the Chelsea fans saw a determined fightback from their 11 heroes on that day, the Stamford Bridge faithful left knowing they'd witnessed something bigger than football itself.
91 placed passes. Not one misplaced.
You can't spell Antonio Rüdiger without the word 'great'. Coincidence? I'll let you be the judge of that.
Source : 90min