Chelsea: Antonio Rudiger's redemption is complete after performance v Atletico

Antonio Rudiger has certainly won over Chelsea fans!

At the end of January, Antonio Rudiger was not a popular man in the eyes of Chelsea fans.

Following the sacking of Frank Lampard, rumours about the German defender's poor conduct behind-the-scenes circulated quickly.

As we reported here, Rudiger was alleged to have clashed with club captain Cesar Azpilicueta in training, news that predictably went down like a lead balloon among supporters.

But less than two months later, Rudiger's redemption is complete after his latest defensive masterclass in Chelsea's 2-0 win over Atletico Madrid.

The German international didn't put a foot wrong at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening, nullifying the threat of Luis Suarez, who was subbed off after just 59 minutes of action.

Rudiger also played Atletico at their own game in the final 10 minutes of proceedings. The Chelsea defender went down in the box after a soft elbow to the chest from Stefan Savic, which saw the Atletico man sent off.

Rudiger's use of the footballing dark arts, as well as his elite-level defensive performance, were praised to the rafters by the club's fans and you can check out some of the best reaction below.

Rudiger wins over Chelsea fans

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Well played, Antonio.

Now that the £22.5m-rated defender is thriving under Thomas Tuchel, it seems weird to think that he was close to leaving Stamford Bridge last summer and Rudiger even had a phone call with Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho.

"I was close (to leaving)," Rudiger told Sky Sports before Wednesday's game against Atletico. "There were really like two teams, maybe one team I was considering, that was PSG to be honest.

"There was (a) call also with Mourinho, but this is something at the end of the day that didn't happen, and with Tuchel also, (but it) didn't happen.

"I was upset of course because I knew my situation and wouldn't play that often."

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Let's start with an easy one. Which footballer do these eyes belong to?

At that time, Chelsea fans would probably have been glad to see the back of him as well, further proof that things can change in football very, very quickly.

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