Antonio Rudiger was ridiculed for his perpetual 'Forrest Gump' style running by fans as Germany crumbled against Japan in the World Cup.
The Real Madrid ace was at the heart of Germany's defence during their shock loss to Japan, who came back from one goal down to win 2-1. Hansi Flick's side took the lead through an Ilkay Gundogan penalty in the first half, but his spot kick was cancelled out by two late strikes from Japanese duo Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano.
But despite the shocking scoreline, it was Rudiger's bizarre running style that was a hot topic amongst fans. The former Chelsea star decided to gallop with his knees chest high whilst marshalling the ball out of play as ex-Arsenal man and second-half substitute Takuma Asano tried to gain possession.
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And Rudiger's unique shuffle led fans to compare him to movie legend Forrest Gump, who spent most of the hit film running distinctly due to his leg braces. One fan quipped on Twitter: "Rudiger moving like prime Forrest Gump." Another fan echoed the same sentiment, and a third concluded that Rudiger runs differently to distract opponents.
Explaining his theory, the supporter said: "It's Rudiger's secret move; I play the fool running like Forrest Gump and the opposite stops laughing." It's not the first time the 29-year-old's gait has come into question, fans took aim at him when he deployed the weird running style during Real's match against Espanyol in August this year.
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But the centre-back's defensive tactics weren't enough to prevent Germany from losing their second World Cup opener in consecutive tournaments. However, the German's did use the game to protest against FIFA's decision banning keeper Manuel Neuer from wearing a One Love armband.
Germany's surprise loss to Japan comes after Argentina fell victim to minnows, Saudi Arabia, on Tuesday. Rudiger and his teammates are in a precarious position now in the group stages as Spain await them on Saturday.
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