What's the story?
Failing to cope with the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo, Real Madrid have had an underwhelming start to the season. They currently sit 4th on the LaLiga table and the club's hierarchy, as well as the players, are understood to be growing increasingly frustrated.
It is evident that Madrid will be desperate to bring in some much-needed reinforcements in the January transfer window if they are to drag themselves out of the rut they're currently in.
Los Blancos have been repeatedly linked with Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard, but despite a lot of speculation, no deal materialised earlier this summer, forcing the Belgian to remain at Chelsea.
Now, reports from The Daily Express suggest that Madrid are extremely desperate to sign Hazard, and could also give up Gareth Bale as part of the offer.
In case you didn't know...
After Ronaldo's departure, Bale was expected to take his place as the club's talisman. However, the Welshman has only scored 3 LaLiga goals so far and has failed to step up. Further, his extreme injury-prone nature makes him unreliable, calling for the purchase of another Galactico.
On the other hand, Hazard seems to be in the form of his life, taking the Premier League by storm. He is widely being hailed the best in the league, while some are even claiming that he's the best in the world, judging by current form.
The heart of the matter
Hazard has made no secret of the fact that he dreams of playing for Real Madrid, suggesting that the move is inevitable. His current contract at Chelsea runs until June 2020, and should he decide not to sign a new contract, his worth will only reduce.
Meanwhile, this swap deal would provide Madrid with the perfect opportunity to offload Bale who has been linked with a return to the Premier League several times in the past.
As per the aforementioned reports, Spanish journalist, Eduardo Inda, believes that this deal could actually see the light of day as it would make sense for all parties involved.
"Real Madrid is considering making a trade: Bale, Chelsea and Hazard, Real Madrid," he said.
"Hazard wants to come."
“Real Madrid is made [happy] with a player who sooner or later will come and Chelsea get a player they like.
“I think it would be Bale and more money.”
Adding to it, reports from OK Diario (via The Daily Star) claim that Real Madrid intend to land Hazard in January and not wait until summer, and could try and force this swap deal in the winter transfer window.
Video: Eden Hazard would solve Real Madrid's problems
Rumour Probability/Rating: 7/10
With reports claiming that the Madrid hierarchy is willing to back the new manager, Julen Lopetegui, with transfer funding worth nearly £170 million, this deal would be extremely feasible.
If Hazard has set his heart on leaving, Chelsea can only postpone the inevitable, but won't be able to stop it. It only makes sense for them to amicably part with him, and getting Bale in return would also be a huge positive.
Hazard is 27 and Bale is 29. Both superstars have enough time left in their respective careers and this swap deal could see both of them happy.
Meanwhile, Chelsea and Madrid will also greatly benefit from it, and it will definitely be interesting to see if this high-profile swap deal actually materialisesPublished 17 Oct 2018, 15:02 IST