The Belgium international is on the radar of Europe’s top clubs and has already, most likely, played his last match for Lille, netting a hat-trick to draw the curtains down on the club he faithfully served for 7 years.
Hazard has been quite open about his desire to join the Premier League and he was quick to make both Manchester clubs aware of his talents and desire to move there next year. Chelsea’s recent success in the Champions League has also tempted Hazard to ponder a move to London. So while Hazard enjoys his flirting, let’s really see whether he is worth all the fuss.
Name – Eden Hazard
Date of Birth – 7th January 1991
Current Club – Lille
Appearances – 192
Goals – 50
Assists – 38
At 21 years of age and his peak years still way ahead of him, he is a collector’s item that clubs will be looking to snatch. He definitely fits into all aspects of a club given that he is so young and talented. He is a very dynamic player and apart from his attacking midfield role, he can play as a winger too. He loves to keep possession of the ball and make those long darting runs on the flank, throwing in step-overs and gentle but timely flicks to show his flare. The fact that he can be utilized in various positions on the pitch gives any manager more in-depth strength and ability to play him in different attacking positions based on given circumstances. He’s got amazing pace and one thing defenders in the Premier League often have trouble handling, is bullet pace. Vision is another attribute he has improved on and he stands out as an effective passer of the ball so when he’s not scoring, he’s looking out to make those deadly assists.
A promising fact is that his goal-scoring and assisting abilities are improving. In his professional 5 year stint with Lille, every season Hazard has improved on his goal and assist tally set by him in the previous season, reaching a goal tally of 22 and assist tally of 16 in his fifth and most likely last season here. It just shows that he’s got great scope for improvement and his potential has no boundaries. He also has 26 caps for Belgium and playing for one’s country offers a lot of experience for a player to mature.
One thing which may be of concern is that at 5 feet and 7 inches, he doesn’t look too aggressively built which is an important attribute for a player in the Premier League. It may take a while before he gets used to the pointless pushing and shoving.
However, Hazard wouldn’t come on the cheap, maybe costing in the region of £30-40 million. But, in a footballing world where Joleon Lescott cost £22 million, the asking price is quite reasonable and given his young age and scope for improvement, any club who wants him must at least sacrifice by loosening the purse strings a little.
So, with Hazard set to make his decision within the next week or so, one thing is for sure – whichever team he doesn’t choose, must be wary of his abilities, for Hazard is a darn right hazard to play against.