Over the last few weeks -- ever since Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League at the hand of Atletico Madrid, there has been a bit of a kerfuffle around the relationship between Eden Hazard and Jose Mourinho. Rather than go through the outside reasons that led me to believe the frenzy was rather overblown, I'll just let Hazard defuse it on his own:
[Mourinho's comments are] good and it's true. I would prefer him to speak like this rather than say he's the 'best and doesn't need to work'. I know I have to do better, in training and on the pitch. If I can score more I will score more and next season I hope I will be better.
I want to be the best, I hope one day I can win the Ballon d'Or, maybe not now but if I work every day and take pleasure from my game then why not?
As I was telling someone the other day, Hazard is a bit of a clown, but he has the drive to succeed that marks the very best from the merely great, and when he's criticised he seems to have a tendency to embrace any complaints and work even harder. And that, as far as Chelsea are concerned, can only be a good thing. Eden Hazard wants to be the best, and he wants to be pushed in that direction by his manager. He's not a player who needs coddling.
And he's going to keep improving. Good luck, Premier League!