Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger says the club is sending a message to the rest of the squad by bringing in big names this summer.

The Blues have announced their fifth major signing in Thiago Silva after previously securing the signings of Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell and Malang Sarr.

Rudiger is excited about the prospect of closing the gap on the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City with these new recruits.

Chelsea Pre-Season Training

(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

He told Transfermarkt: “I am always happy to see new faces in the team. After the transfer ban last summer, we were of course hoping to get some real reinforcements.

“With Hakim, I immediately had a good feeling and my relation to and opinion about Timo is already known.

“With such names, the club is also sending a clear message to the existing personnel that they want to take another step forward in the overall development.

“I think that is great!”

(Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

Although he respects what Liverpool and Manchester City have done in the past couple of years, the Germany international does not think those two will dominate everything in the next few years.

“Man United could move closer in the long term with consistent performances like after the corona break, and we shouldn’t forget Tottenham,” he added.

“And then there’s also us, who want to close the gap step by step.”

Chelsea finish fourth in the 2019/20 Premier League and secured a Champions League spot but still trailed by 33 and 15 points to Liverpool and Manchester City respectively.

The new recruits will hopefully reduce the gap but, as Rudiger said, it would likely be a “step by step” process.

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