There can be little doubting that Eden Hazard is one of the world’s most talented and respected footballers. However, the Belgian’s yawning goal drought looks to threaten the confidence and composure on which he built much of his prior success at Chelsea.
After a superb 2014-15 season that saw Hazard secure the prestigious PFA Player of the Year Award, the 24-year-old entered this campaign looking to continue his electric form.
Despite this promise, the ex-Lille winger has proven one of the most prominent victims of Chelsea’s debacle this year.
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With not a single club strike since May, in any competition at all, Hazard is being plagued by an unprecedented goal drought.
Eden Hazard’s goal on May 3, 2015, remains a fond memory for Chelsea fans.
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The Blues forward scored a headed rebound from his own penalty that saw Chelsea secure the Premier League title. As the only goal in the game, Crystal Palace were narrowly put to the sword 1-0.
It proved a fitting end to a fantastic season for the 24-year-old. His goal had crowned the sealing of a piece of silverware that the club had fought for so determinedly all season.
Arguably Hazard’s best term in a Chelsea shirt, the directed header proved his 19th goal in a year that saw his international reputation further swell.
However, few expected that that finish against the Eagles would be the last time Hazard would find the net for Chelsea in 2015.
Despite the Belgian having seven more months in the calendar year, the tricky winger simply hasn’t delivered a single goal.
Never before has the mercurial forward experienced such a dire run in front of goal and it has hurt his club spectacularly.
Hazard proved the Blues’ key man last season and with their Belgian superstar misfiring, the club finds itself choking in mid table.
At this point in 2014-15, Hazard already amassed 11 goals in all competitions, yet the Belgian will struggle to retain such a tally over the entire course of this term. His decline in finishing is simply astonishing.
Whilst Hazard has vastly improved his creativity and potency in recent weeks under Guus Hiddink, his shooting boots persist to evade him.
Such a yawning drought in front of goal is certainly worrying for Chelsea and begs the question as to whether Hazard has lost his touch.
However it must be remembered, that at just 24, the Belgian is still young and has much to learn.
His original impact at Chelsea may have been practically instant but still in his youth, Hazard is bound to have barren spells. Yet, equally, this arid form appears to exceed the average run without a goal.
Furthermore, the longer it takes for Hazard to ascertain that evasive moment of glory, the more it will ebb away at the youngster’s already fragile confidence. For Blues fans’ sake, they must hope it comes sooner rather than later.
It may seem unwise in the present to allow such a mercurial player to leave the club but at what point do you snap when one of your key offensive stars can no longer cut it?
Hazard’s future rests in the balance. Although the Belgian brings more to the table than just goals, seven months without finding the net is unacceptable for such an attacking player.
The 24-year-old’s goal drought simply defies belief but surely it will end in the New Year. However, if the barren run does in fact continue, Hazard’s future at Chelsea will become more and more questionable by the week.
After all, with Chelsea finding themselves in 14th place, the club is crying out for goals and Hazard simply isn’t offering them.
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