Chelsea forward Eden Hazard has revealed he could yet stay at the club, amid ongoing links with Real Madrid.
The Belgian has been heavily linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge with Real Madrid touted to be favourites for his signature should he leave.
Will Hazard stay at Chelsea? Five key things to know…
- Hazard has less than 18 months remaining on his present Chelsea deal.
- The Belgian has long been linked with a move to Real Madrid, having previously admitted his desire to play for Los Blancos.
- Hazard also revealed he wanted to leave Chelsea last summer following a successful World Cup with Belgium.
- The forward has not admitted he is open to staying at Chelsea beyond this summer, with nothing set in stone yet.
- No Chelsea player has been directly involved in more Premier League goals than Hazard this season (10 goals, 10 assists).
Hazard’s present Chelsea contract runs out at the end of next season, bringing fears he could leave in the summer as the Blues try to cash in before his worth drastically drops.
These reports have always been fuelled by Hazard’s freely spoken interviews in which he has previously revealed his desire to join Real Madrid and how close he came to leaving Chelsea after the World Cup.
But the 29-year-old has given Chelsea fans new hope of staying by revealing he is not going anywhere just yet.
“I have won everything in England, apart from the Community Shield, but that doesn’t mean that I’m leaving,” he told France Football.
“I have always said that I wanted to explore something different after England. But there are also things that might make me stay.
“After the World Cup, I wanted to leave, but in the end I stayed at Chelsea and I’m playing one of [my] best seasons so far.
“So I don’t think that I need a different challenge. But that doesn’t mean that I will become better.”
Hazard is Chelsea’s top scorer in the Premier League with 10 goals and has also provided 10 assists, more than any other player in the division.
Hazard: I frustrate all my coaches but won’t change
Despite his good standing in the Premier League this season, Hazard has caused frustration to Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri due to his work rate.
The Belgian was among the Chelsea squad blasted by Sarri following their 2-0 defeat at Arsenal, in which the Italian admitted his players were difficult to motivate.
“I’m really angry about the approach that we adopted today,” Sarri said.
“It’s an approach we can’t really accept. I have to say, I’m extremely angry. Very angry indeed. This defeat was due to our mentality, more than anything else. This is something I can’t accept.
“This group of players are extremely difficult to motivate.”
And it appears Hazard knows he frustrates managers, though the Belgian also admitted he has no intentions of changing.
“I didn’t just frustrate Conte,” he added.
“In my career, I’ve frustrated all my coaches. And with Sarri, once again, I frustrate him. I frustrated [Jose] Mourinho.
“They think that I need to mark more, do more of this and more of that. And the next coach that I have, I’ll frustrate him as well.”