Darren Bent does not believe Antonio Rudiger can be accused of joining Real Madrid for financial reasons.
The German defender looks set to sign for Real after making it clear he wants to leave Chelsea, where his contract expires at the end of the season.
He was reportedly offered £200,000 a week to stay at Stamford Bridge and his decision to leave has led many Blues fans on social media to suggest he is guilty of being greedy.
However, former Tottenham and England striker Bent believes Real’s status means Rudiger will want to join them for football reasons.
Speaking on Talksport, Bent said: “I don’t think it’s for money.
“No disrespect, if he was joining Newcastle, you’d go ‘Hmmm. He might be doing that for the money because the board are paying him a big whack’.
“But the fact he’s going to one of the most iconic clubs in Real Madrid – that have won more European cups than anyone – I don’t think you can simply throw that ‘Oh, he’s going for money’- because he’s going to Real Madrid.
“Still, by name, they’re arguably the biggest club in the world. I’m sure money has swayed it a little bit. But this is Real Madrid, come on. How can you turn your nose up at that?”
Bent also believes Chelsea will find it difficult to replace Rudiger – particularly as Andreas Christensen is also set to leave.
“Very (difficult) and I think that’s the problem,” Bent said.
“It’s going to be a big, big miss. They’re going to have to replace two because Christensen looks like he’s going to Barcelona.”