Rudiger turned 26 on Sunday and produced a typically solid defensive performance in testing conditions. He also made a game-high 78 successful passes, one of which started the move that Higuain so clinically finished off.
Reflecting on a second straight league win, Rudiger pinpointed our ability to deal with difficult circumstances as being integral to the outcome.
‘A London derby presents its own challenges,’ he said.
‘Although they are a team very low in the table, they tried and gave their all, their supporters were behind them, and there were some parts that were very dangerous. But we showed again that we can suffer.
‘It was an important win. There are only 10 matches left and every one of them is a final. We started against Tottenham, we continued away now and it’s good.’
In the end we only netted once more after Higuain’s opener, that a stunning strike from Jorginho, and Rudiger felt we probably should have scored further goals.
However two proved enough and Higuain’s effort that got us up and running was his third in the Premier League. It perfectly demonstrated his movement and finishing ability.
‘Higuain’s goal was impressive. This is how he is. He is trying his best and working for the team.
‘Although he’s an experienced player who has played for Real Madrid and Juventus, this is a different competition. You also need to adapt and we as players need to help him as much as possible, and he can help himself by scoring goals.’