Former Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has admitted he would like to see his old teammate Eden Hazard join him at Real Madrid.
Links between Hazard and Madrid have been growing since last summer and have increased throughout the season.
Could Eden Hazard join Real Madrid? Five key things to know…
- Hazard’s future at Chelsea started to look doubtful when he entered the last two years of his contract in the summer.
- He continues to perform well for club and country, winning the FA Cup last term and taking Belgium to the World Cup semi-finals.
- He began this season well but his form has dipped in 2019, with Maurizio Sarri questioning his leadership qualities.
- After a couple of heavy losses, Hazard denied Sarri’s accusations of the team being hard to motivate.
- The 28-year-old is understood to have made a decision on his future.
Like Hazard, Courtois was heavily linked with a move to the Bernabeu last summer. However, unlike Hazard, the keeper forced his move to Madrid by reportedly refusing to turn up for training, which left a sour taste in the mouths of Chelsea fans.
Hazard, on the other hand, has continued to play for Chelsea and with 15 goals and 10 assists in all competitions, he has been the club’s standout player this season.
Speaking to VTM Nieuws on Hazard’s current dilemma, Courtois expressed what he’d like to see happen.
He said: “This is his decision and I cannot say much about it.
“But of course, I want to play with him at club level again, partly because he is a great player but also because he is my friend.
“If he came to Madrid it would be good but the decision is his.”
After the comments surfaced, Chelsea fans took to Twitter and made it clear that there was still no love between them and their ex-shot stopper.
I’m not a bitter person but I love it when the ball goes through his legs (which happens on a weekly basis)
— . (@Chelsea_Based1) February 14, 2019
This sounds like the snake convincing Eve to eat the apple.
— Ivan Henn (@IvanHnn) February 14, 2019
— Luisa Gottardo (@lu1820) February 14, 2019
Does Hazard need to make the move?
This has been a saga that has been rumbling on for months now, and the possible transfer has brought a lot of discussion as to whether Hazard needs to move to Real Madrid.
A key player at Chelsea, he is someone who has been regarded as a potential Ballon d’Or winner. Even Mauricio Pochettino compared him to current greats Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Speaking in January, he said: “Hazard is the type of high-level player like Messi and Ronaldo, this type of player is difficult to stop.”
However, despite this high praise, many believe a move to Los Blancos will boost his chances of winning the Ballon d’Or. Especially as in the last ten years, the winner has either played for Real Madrid or Barcelona.
In October, Hazard’s former teammate Mark Schwartzer spoke on Sky Sports’ The Debate about whether it would help the Belgian’s chances of winning if he was at Madrid.
He said: “To win the Ballon d’Or, you don’t have to just be the best player on the planet for that season but you have to be in the most successful team.
“Ronaldo was winning it at Real Madrid because they kept winning the Champions League along with him playing exceptionally well.
“For Eden Hazard to win it at Chelsea, Chelsea will need to have an amazing season on top of that.
“I admire his honesty. Some people will get upset by it but ultimately, he’s talking about Real Madrid, one of the most successful clubs in the world.”
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