While his compatriots have gone off the boil, Eden Hazard has kept on motoring, steering Chelsea to the title. Jose Mourinho was looking for inspiration in a tightly-contested match, and after laying it on a plate for Cesc Fabregas at Loftus Road last week, it was inevitable the Belgian's contribution was going to be the telling factor.
Manchester United were impressive at Stamford Bridge, and but for Hazard, they would be leaving west London with their share of the spoils. The goal will be a bitter pill to swallow for Louis van Gaal after he saw his side lay down a marker.
Hazard's opener against Manchester United was a finish of the highest quality, parading poise and precision to slot it between goalkeeper David de Gea's legs.
The Belgian put a dent in De Gea's aspirations of claiming the PFA Player of the Year award and took a giant stride towards claiming it himself.
Harry Kane and Alexis Sanchez provide Hazard with the sternest competition for the gong but Hazard has shown his mettle, consistently producing the goods in Chelsea's title run-in as they have surely sewn it up.
Hazard has now scored or assisted against Manchester City, Arsenal, Tottenham, Southampton and Manchester United. The 24-year-old has come up trumps against the divison's best sides and his extraordinary dossier encompassing his remarkable campaign makes him the standout winner.
He has been hailed for his goals, 18 for Chelsea in 46 appearances, and his 10 assists, but the stats only provide some detail in the bigger picture of Hazard's brilliance. His balance, boldness, technique, skill, nervelessness and clinical edge were all encapsulated in the 2-1 win against Stoke on April 4.
He did not only stroke a penalty into the other corner after giving Begovic the eyes, the Belgian pounced on a defensive mishap to dance his way past bodies and lay it on a plate for Loic Remy to score.
Although, the 'most fouled' stat concocts an anaemic case to enunciate Hazard's superior quality, the systematic fouling of the Belgian has become a ploy to curtail his effect on proceedings, which has seen a number of players booked for impeding the wizard and is effectively a declaration of fear of his outstanding qualities.
Eden Hazard is comfortably the best footballer in England and barring an unlikely scandal, he has it in the bag, not to mention the ludicrously premature elections could play a part.
If Kane finishes the season as the Premier League's top scorer while playing for a far weaker team, the striker would most probably be worthy of recognition following a more impressive individual campaign.
Illustrious footsteps to follow
Despite being amongst the most gifted players in the world, Hazard hasn't quite lit up the Premier League like former winners Luis Suarez, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo. Hazard's ennoble has been somewhat precipitated by the lack of any other players willing to challenge him.
Though, Hazard's consistently brilliant performances that seep admiration and joy is like none other in the premier league. He has outshone his adversaries and has been the Player of the Year.
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