Wanted man Hazard alerts Europe's top clubs
Tuesday 01 November 2011
The Belgian midfielder Eden Hazard triggered the attention of Europe's top clubs yesterday when he said he would leave the French champions Lille at the end of the season.
Hazard, who was voted Ligue 1 players' player of the year last season, told French sports daily L'Equipe he was playing his last season in France. "I feel ready to make it to the next level in a great club," Hazard said. "I stayed in Lille this season because there were still things I had to work on, things to prove. But now, I'm ready."
During the summer Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal, Manchester City and Internazionale were reportedly interested in signing the 20-year-old Belgian. Hazard was also linked with league leaders Paris St-Germain with reports that they were ready to make a €50m offer in January, but Hazard ruled out the move. "Paris is not for now. After France, I want to go abroad," said Hazard, who has scored four goals and set up as many in 12 Ligue 1 games this season.
Hazard's club Lille geared up for their Champions League trip to Internazionale with a 0-0 draw at lowly north-east rivals Valenciennes on Sunday. The French champions lost defender Marko Basa to a back injury after six minutes but the point edged them into third place on goal difference.
Toulouse went above Stade Rennes into fifth after a 1-0 home victory courtesy of Etienne Didot's 26th-minute goal. The win came in spite of Antoine Devaux being dismissed for a dangerous tackle after 55 minutes. In the other Sunday match, the referee showed nine yellow cards and one red in Nice's 1-1 draw with Sochaux.
Leaders Paris St-Germain beat Caen 4-2 at Parc des Princes on Saturday to stay three clear of Montpellier while Lyons, level on points with Lille and six behind PSG after 12 games, won their derby, 2-0 at home to St Etienne.
Latest in Sport
Frank Lampard was RIGHT not to celebrate Manchester City's equaliser against Chelsea
All Blacks Aaron Cruden misses New Zealand flight after drinking session, has brilliant excuse
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Five reasons why Louis van Gaal is a worse Manchester United manager than David Moyes
Comment: Louis Van Gaal struggled at start of Bayern reign, but Manchester United's problems run deeper and Premier League is less forgiving
- 1 Rihanna 'nude pictures' claims emerge on 4Chan as hacking scandal continues
- 2 Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
- 3 'F*ck it, I quit': KTVA reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 4 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned PR disaster
- 5 Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Hilary Mantel 'should be investigated by police' over Margaret Thatcher assassination story, says Lord Bell
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God