Eden Hazard has revealed that Ivory Coast veteran Didier Drogba is the reason he joined Chelsea in 2012, after initially not being keen on the move.
In a candid interview with the Daily Mirror, the Blues’ brightest star has shed light on his move from Lille three years ago, and the results are truly interesting.
Hazard joins Chelsea
Despite AS Roma boss Rudi Garcia’s notion that it was the millions of Roman Abramovich that drew Hazard to west London the player himself has opened up on the subject and, brace yourselves, there was one player in particular who he says made the difference.
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"I didn't want to go to Chelsea because I wanted to play the Champions League and they were sixth in the league," he said.
"I was convinced when they won the Champions League in 2012.
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"At the time, Roberto Di Matteo really wanted me, they had Juan Mata, and Oscar had been bought. I was told: 'You'll see, Chelsea will play football'.
"Gervinho called me and said: 'Someone's on the phone'. I didn't know who it was but it was Drogba, he wanted me to sign.
"I was flattered, he was maybe the best striker in the world. In my head, I wasn't going to sign, but in the end I was very pleased with my choice. I didn't speak to Abramovich. I don't know why coach Garcia wrote that in his book."
For Blues fans it might be difficult to digest that their leading man once upon a time didn’t fancy Stamford Bridge, particularly given how important he’s become under Jose Mourinho. Hazard has been a crowd favourite ever since his arrival in England’s capital, but it’s with The Special One that he’s really become… well, special.
The future looks bright
Having earlier this year pledged his future to Chelsea via a new five-year deal it’s safe to assume fears that Hazard would leave for the bright lights of Real Madrid or the bursting coin coffers of Paris Saint-Germain have been banished for now, and Mourinho is almost certainly going to continue to build his team around the diminutive playmaker as he looks to push on for European honours as of next year.
It’s hardly a coincidence that once again it looks like it’s Drogba who saved the day, although this time his contribution to the cause could prove to be a decisive factor in the success Chelsea enjoy for seasons to come.
How good could he be?
Hazard could well become one of the world’s best players before too long, and the fact he’ll do that whilst wearing a blue shirt might just turn out to be yet another parting gift the Ivory Coast legend has offered up.
Chelsea fans, how good can Hazard grow to become? Has he got the potential to match Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.
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