Unfortunately, the real pressing question is never asked and thus is not answered. Does Eden Hazard smell better then David Luiz or Salomon Kalou? Please, Mr. Hiddink, next time. Inquiring minds need to know.
"I don't speak too much, I'm not a psychologist who says, 'Come on, lie down on the couch, what's bothering you privately or professionally?' I don't do that, but they are normally short conversations in the medical room or dressing room. I do that with most of the players and you "smell" how they feel and how eager they are. He smells very good!"
Hiddink and his keen sense of smell are set to guide Chelsea to perhaps a fourth straight match unbeaten later today away to Crystal Palace. Despite the unavailability of multiple key players for the hosts, this task promises to be Hiddink's toughest test yet in his fledgling second career at interim boss. Fortunately, good-smelling Eden Hazard is once again fully fit and eager and ready to kick some Eagle tail.
"First of all, he is very versatile to play in various positions but on either wing position he might have his best performance. As a coach I haven't experienced him in the past and now I have had him for just a few days because he was injured. He came back with a strong character. He definitely wanted to play the last game and also part of the Watford game, although he had just practiced for three days before, which means he is very eager to perform and get back to his shape."
"If a player comes back from an injury then normally they like to take some time to get in good physical and mental shape, but he was eager to play in the Watford game already because when he was warming up and when I looked at him, he said, 'Please, bring me on, bring me on.' That means he is eager to play, which also as a consequence means he can go to the performance level we are used to. At Old Trafford they were searching for him all over the pitch and he reacted very well - he has a very strong character. If the eagerness is there then I think he can reach the level of performance we are used to."
Hiddink's counting on not only Hazard to rediscover his form, but for others to step up and take pressure off the likes of Diego Costa and Cesc Fàbregas, and for new leaders to emerge in the dressing room as well.
"...that's what I'm asking now from players as well - that they can and must demand of each other, not just demanding in their commitment because they are all committed..."
"We (managers) think we have a lot of power on the bench, which is not true. You can just prepare your team and you have your three substitution possibilities, but I like always to have these guys [on the pitch] in charge. Now I am saying to these guys, "Come on, take the lead."
-Guus Hiddink; source: Chelsea FC
Is that all? Let's get to it.