Eden Hazard has reignited talk of a departure from Chelsea by admitting that it is a childhood dream of his to join Spanish giants Real Madrid, but is concerned by the reaction to Thibaut Courtois’ exit.
The Belgian international has previously questioned Chelsea’s ambition after failing to qualify for the Champions League and said immediately after the World Cup that “it might be time for something different,” admitting Real Madrid would be his “preferred destination.”
Chelsea’s resurgence under Maurizio Sarri has the club joint top on points with Manchester City and Liverpool after an unbeaten start to the Premier League. Their latest win, a 3-0 victory against Southampton, was one of their best performances of the season, according to their manager. But despite the upturn in fortunes, Hazard is still considering bigger things.
“Real Madrid is the best club in the world,” Hazard told reporters after the match at St Mary’s. “I don’t want to lie, it is my dream since I was a kid. I was dreaming about this club. We will see. I don’t want to talk about this every day. I don’t have time, but we will talk about my future soon. I think so.”
The 27-year-old did reiterate that staying at Chelsea would not make him unhappy, but says he should be considering his future as he feels he only has one big move left in his career. “When you have a dream and you want to make it happen,” he said.
“It is like I have said a lot of times: if I leave I will be happy; if I know I stay I will be happy. It is not like if I go I am happy and if I stay than I am unhappy.”
Having watched his international teammate Courtois depart Chelsea under a cloud of anger created by the supporters, Hazard will not force his way out of the club, but says he does have to start putting his future ahead of the club’s. “I don’t want that,” he said when comparing his situation to Courtois’.
“I want what’s good for me, but I want what’s good for the club because the club has given me everything. I don’t want to say, ‘Yes, I am signing a new contract’ and then at the end I don’t end up in signing. So I will see. Sometimes in my head, I wake up in the morning and think, ‘I want to go’. Sometimes I think I want to stay. It’s a hard decision. It is my future. I am 27 and will turn 28 in January.”
Hazard, who has won two Premier League titles, an FA Cup, the League Cup and the Europa League during his first six seasons at Chelsea, says he would be willing to listen to offers over a new contract, which could take his wage as high as £300,000, according to reports. “I could talk now,” he said.
“If they come to me, then I will talk. I don’t want to say that I am not talking with the club or the owner. I am talking a lot with them.”
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