Germany defender Antonio Rüdiger will leave Chelsea at the end of the season after turning down the offer of a new contract, manager Thomas Tuchel confirmed on Sunday.
“The situation is that he wants to leave the club,” Tuchel said after their 1-0 English Premier League win over West Ham.
“He informed me of this in a private talk.
“It is disappointing. We will miss him a lot.”
The 29-year-old Rüdiger was reportedly offered record terms for a defender from Chelsea.
Tuchel said competing for his signature was made harder by UK government sanctions imposed on the club owned by Russian Roman Abramovich as a result of the invasion of Ukraine.
“We gave everything — me and the club — but we could not fight anymore because of the actions,” Tuchel explained.
“Without the sanctions we would at least be able to carry on fighting, but our hands are tied.”
Chelsea are prevented from signing new players, and even renewing contracts with their existing squad is far from straightforward.
Media reports say Rüdiger’s team have been discussing potential moves with top clubs such as Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus.
Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich could also be interested in him as a replacement for the departing Niklas Süle.