Mourinho on Hazard: Time to go from 'top talent' to 'top player'

Ulet Ifansasti

Eden Hazard is very good already. Jose Mourinho's going to make him much better, and the process has already started.

It's sometimes difficult to remember that Eden Hazard is just 22 years old. He's been considered one of Europe's more dangerous players for years, and he's playing at a level that few in their prime could ever hope to match. But in footballing terms, he's still a baby, and that makes him malleable -- something Jose Mourinho plans to take advantage of:

Eden has been with us from the start of pre-season and at the moment I'm trying to adapt Eden into everything I think a top player should have,.

For example, Hazard did some defensive work in the friendly against Inter Milan that he usually doesn't.

He is a top talent, but it's one thing being a top talent and another being a top player. And I want him to be a top player.

-Source: Mail.

The long version of my response to this quote goes a little like this: I don't think Hazard's ever had problems with his work ethic (I seem to recall him offering to play left back, if required) -- he just needs help in the actual mechanics of defending. Seeing him and Victor Moses work very hard on the flanks against Inter was a big step forward, and I don't see why 'strong defender' can't be in his arsenal. He's so fast that starting from deeper won't really hurt him from an attacking perspective, and he's got the strength to help out when the opposition has the ball.

The short version of my response is that everyone who doesn't have Eden Hazard on their team should be very, very frightened.

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