Glen Johnson believes it’s ‘madness’ Chelsea have allowed Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen to run down their contracts.
The pair are out of contract at the end of the season and at present look unlikely to sign new deals.
Rudiger is said to be holding out for a bumper contract amid interest from a host of European clubs while Christensen will likely want assurances from Thomas Tuchel he’ll be a guaranteed starter if he’s to sign a new deal.
Former Chelsea defender Johnson feels Tuchel’s side could be in big trouble if both their centre-backs depart on a free transfer this summer.
Top centre-halves who can cope with the Premier League are not easy to find. So it’s madness that Christensen and Rudiger could both potentially leave on free transfers,’ he told bettingexpert.
It’s not easy to replace a centre-half to compete in a title race. That’s much trickier than the [Mo] Salah situation at Liverpool.
‘Chelsea have got players who can create and score goals, but for players that can cope and defend in a top team in the Premier League, they’re harder to find than a creative player.
‘Christensen could leave because he might put his foot down and say he wants to play every week somewhere else – and rightly so because he’s a good player, but he’s only getting older.
‘He’s going to want to nail down a career somewhere. So he might want to leave. For Rudiger, if he wants to stay then they’ll want to keep e other end of the pitch, there are question marks over Romelu Lukaku’s future, after he was dropped by Tuchel in the Champions League following a dismal display against Crystal Palace.
Lukaku only returned to the Blues in the summer in a club-record £97.5m move but after struggling to find his feet, Tuchel could adopt a new system that focuses on Kai Havertz leading the line.
Johnson doesn’t feel Chelsea will attempt to cash in on him in the upcoming transfer window though.
‘I reckon Lukaku will stay, but that’s purely down to a business point of view. From what they paid in the summer, they’ll get nowhere near the money they paid for him,’ he said.
‘So I think they’re going to at least give him another chance. Look, we all know he’s capable of scoring, but at the minute it’s not working.
‘I don’t think he’ll leave this summer, he’ll still be there next season. But all these top clubs are always looking for the next star. They’ll probably be more actively looking now because of the Lukaku situation.’