Real Madrid's Antonio Rudiger, center, argues with Rayo's Florian Lejeune during a Spanish La Liga soccer match between Real Madrid and Rayo Vallecano at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023.

Someone please check on Antonio Rudiger before he declares war on us all

You’d probably be surprised to learn that Real Madrid played this weekend. No Jude Bellingham goal felt like a real shock to the system, but fear not, the status quo was restored in other ways.

As Brits looking on at La Liga from afar, we’ve very quickly become accustomed to Bellingham dominating the timeline most weekends for an obscene strike, a last-minute winner or something else that bails out Los Blancos and allows him to hang his arms out wide like a prime Randy Orton.

But this weekend, he and his colleagues fell flat as they were held to a goalless draw at home to an ever-impressive Rayo Vallecano outfit.

Despite dominating proceedings and peppering the visitors’ goal with 22 shots compared to their measly four, only five of those ended up on target as Carlo Ancelotti’s men stuttered, allowing Girona  – yes, really – to remain top of the table.

We fully expect Real to bounce back. That’s what they do, even if it isn’t always pretty. But the one thing that feels more inevitable than midweek Real vengeance and a Jude Bellingham goal, is Antonio Rudiger losing his marbles and trying to kick someone’s head in.

He was at it again, and at this point, we feel like intervention is the only viable outcome.

Frustration was naturally higher than usual among Don Carlo’s army as a stubborn opposition stifled them in front of a home crowd. Still, nobody embodied it better than the German defender, who has developed a knack for being a bit weird.

‘A bit weird’ does a lot of heavy lifting, there. A complete nutter is probably a more accurate assessment.

Not to get too Peter Kay, but who remembers Florian Lejeune?

Remembered for his sensational, last-gasp brace at Goodison Park to rescue a point for Newcastle United back in 2020, Lejeune is now regarded as one of La Liga’s most impressive central defenders and was caught in a tussle with Rudiger as the German attempted to trap the ball in the corner.

Rudiger was successful in his attempt to win a corner for his side, ricocheting the ball off Lejeune’s shin. That’s what makes his sudden outburst all the more batsh*t crazy.

After winning the corner, Rudiger seems to forget what sport he plays professionally and charges at Lejeune – twice – in search of a fist-fight that would put the UFC to shame.

Forget YouTube and influencer boxing, we’re requesting footballer boxing – immediately.

At this point, it’s probably the only way to channel Rudiger’s completely unhinged energy to stop him from starting on all of us.

The German flies out of the traps like a charged-up Brock Lesnar desperate to be released into the Elimination Chamber.

The guy is properly nuts, but we absolutely love it. He could start a fight in an empty house.

Inevitably, Rudiger’s temper is bound to cost Real at some point. But with such a personality, you’ve got to be able to take the rough with the smooth at times.

And with the German, more often than not, that rough is worth it. His aggression is what makes his defensive game so impressive in the first place, and if nothing else, it’s exceptionally entertaining.

Probably worth us all setting some boundaries, though. If you see him out and about, approach him for a selfie at your own risk – Rudiger bingo is possibly the most dangerous game of them all.

By Mitch Wilks

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