Kevin Phillips claims that Chelsea’s handling of Antonio Rudiger “stinks a little bit” after the defender’s move to Tottenham collapsed on deadline-day.
The former Sunderland and Aston Villa striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, suggested that Frank Lampard pulled the plug on the 27-year-old leaving the club.
Football Insider revealed on Monday that the Lilywhites were confident of completing a deal for Rudiger before Chelsea blocked the transfer.
The centre-half has fallen down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge following the arrival of Thiago Silva and is yet to make an appearance for the Blues this season.
Germany manager Joachim Low, who is currently with Rudiger on international duty, claimed that the player tried “everything” to exit the London club this summer.
When asked by Football Insider why he thinks Chelsea blocked the defender’s exit, Phillips said:
“It was possibly Chelsea not wanting to sell to a direct rival in Spurs. That stinks a little bit to me.
“I think Chelsea have looked at it and thought, ‘If we give them another centre-half, blimey. They could be a major threat to us.’ It probably does stink a little bit of that.”
Speaking on Rudiger this week, Low said: “I was in constant contact with Toni Rudiger, he was keeping me in the loop. He had three or four options over the weekend but unfortunately, nothing materialised.
“He tried everything to leave Chelsea because the European Championship is very important to him.”
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