Eden Michael Hazard is a Belgian football player who was born on 7 January 1991 in La Louvière, Belgium. Hazard is a winger and mainly plays in the position of attacking midfielder and left wing. He is one of the most technically sound player and known for his speed, creativity, technical and passing ability. He is often ranked as one of the best footballers in the world at the present time.
Hazard became a world class forward during his stint with English club Chelsea. Impressed by his outstanding performances, Spanish giants Real Madrid splashed £89 millions in 2019 to sign him from the Blues. Hazard is still at Real Madrid and is wearing the historic number 7 jersey for Los Blancos.
Football was in Hazard's veins as he was born in a family of footballers. His father and mother both were footballers and had played in local Belgian leagues. At the age of just 4, he joined Royal Stade Brainois and trained with this local club for 8 straight years.
During his initial training, a coach of the club praised him describing him as a “gifted” player. In 2003, he moved to Tubize, a Belgian First Division B team and stayed with the club for 2 years.
In 2005, he headed to France to join first division club, Lille. After spending two years with club's training academy, he signed his first professional contract with Lille on 28 May 2007.
He had also represented Belgium at several youth levels such as Under-15 and Under-16. Before making his senior international debut, he played 37 games at different levels scoring 11 goals.
After signing a contract, Hazard had started playing with the youth team of the club. In November 2007, he received his senior team call up for a friendly as several regular players were on international duty.
As a result, on 16 November, he played his first game coming as a substitute, however his professional debut came on 24 November, coming as a replacement in the 78th minute of the game.
On 19 November 2008, Hazard made his international debut for Belgium in a game against Luxembourg replacing Wesley Sonck in the 67th minute. On 12 August 2009, he made his first start with the squad in a friendly game against Czech Republic. However Belgium had lost the game by 1-3.
Rise to glory
Hazard was permanently promoted to the senior team of Lille for 2008-09 season. His debut goal came on 20 September against Auxerre. Netting the ball in the 88th minute, he helped his team to level the score. Later, Lille also won the match by 3-2. In February 2009, he scored his first match winning goal against Sochaux and on 22 February, provided a match winning assist against Monaco.
On 9 May 2010, he was awarded the UNFP Young Player of the Year trophy for the second season in a row. However, he missed out the Player of the year award by few inches.
On 4 June 2012, Chelsea announced Hazard's arrival in the club. He made his Champions League debut for Chelsea in the opening game of the 2012-13 season against Juventus. However, his first goal in the championship came on 6 October in a 4-1 victory against Norwich City. In October 2013, he was shortlisted for FIFA Ballon d'Or.
In 2013-14 Premier League, he was on fire, scoring goals in back to back games against clubs like Swansea, Liverpool and Hull city. On 8 February 2014, Hazard claimed his first Premier League hattrick in a 3-0 victory against Newcastle United. Eventually, he won the PFA Young Player of the Year award for his performance and also finished as the runner-up for PFA Player of the Year award.
Having him in the team, Chelsea won 2014-15 Premier League and he was awarded Chelsea's Player of the year second time in a row.
Playing 2016-17 Premier League, Hazard led Chelsea to to their 12th win in a row, achieving a new club record. On 26 December 2016, he scored his 50th Premier League goal and defeated Bournemouth by 3-0. Later he also won his 2nd Premier League title for Chelsea. In April 2017, he was named in the PFA Team of the Year for the fourth time. After winning almost everything at Chelsea, Hazard decided to go after his dream to play for Spanish giants Real Madrid. Chelsea were respectful of Hazard's demand and in the end both clubs struck a deal during the summer of 2019 for a whopping £89 millions.
Hazard was handed the historic number 7 jersey which was worn by some of the greatest players in the history of Real Madrid including Cristiano Ronaldo. However, recurring injuries has affected Hazard's Madrid career so far as he is struggling to recreate his magic that he had in the past. Fans are still keeping hopes on the Belgian as he prepares for the upcoming season.
Hazard was also named in the international squad of Belgium to play 2014 FIFA World Cup. He remained key player throughout the tournament and led his team to the quarter finals.
On 7 June 2015, he captained Belgium national team for the first time as team's regular skipper, Vincent Kompany has been suspended. He scored a decisive goal in the match and defeated France by 4-3. He had also captained Belgium in the finals of UEFA Euro 2016 due to the absence of Kompany.
Hazard proved himself as one of the best players in the world. His records in the international as well as club football are fabulous. In 2015, he had got 8th place in the list of shortlisted players for FIFA Ballon d'Or.
Hazard has 85 Premier League goals and 61 assists in his name in 244 fixtures whereas he got 36 goals in 147 Ligue 1 games. In Laliga, the Belgian has only managed to score 4 goals from 48 appearances. Overall, he has scored 165 goals playing 611 fixtures in the various local and international leagues. In the international football, he has netted 33 goals featuring in the 120 games for Belgium.