Jerome Boateng and Tammy Abraham were part of a larger group who revelled in Antonio Rudiger’s performance for Chelsea against Tottenham Hotspur yesterday.
The German international had a huge hand – or rather head – in sending the Blues through to the Carabao Cup final.
With Tottenham trailing 2-0 from the first semi-final leg, all the onus was on Antonio Conte’s men to grab the first goal.
However, it was Thomas Tuchel’s team who looked the hungrier animal, hunting down their prey in packs.
Night to remember in North London
Few were more up for the fight than Rudiger, who is never shy from showing his emotions on the pitch.
He demonstrated more intent than anyone inside the Spurs penalty area when he directed the ball into the net via the back of his cranium after 18 minutes.
The 28-year-old had another chance from a corner earlier on in the second half, but failed to direct his effort towards Pierluigi Gollini’s goal.
His determined nature almost got the better of him, however, when he initially appeared to trip Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg inside the box.
Rudiger’s two-footed challenge looked rash and reckless to the naked eye, yet VAR confirmed that the tackle had been outside the 18-yard line.
Plenty of praise for Rudiger
Aside from the one act of irresponsibility, the centre-back dominated Tottenham from start to finish.
Several of the player’s fan base responded to this dominative display on Instagram.
From within the Chelsea changing room, Thiago Silva, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Mason Mount, Mateo Kovacic, Reece James and Malang Sarr all reacted appropriately.
Boateng, who is openly a huge admirer of his compatriot, left his admiration in emoji form.
The club’s loan army also got involved through Danny Drinkwater and Ian Maatsen, whilst former Blue Carlton Cole congratulated the defender.
Former Stamford Bridge teammate Abraham thought Rudiger’s showing was too hot to touch.
You won’t get this kind of love if you leave Chelsea, Antonio!