This is now the second time that Eden Hazard has talked about leaving Chelsea Football Club, yet it's one of the more hopeful things he's ever said about continuing to stay here for a long time.
"I have a contract until 2020, I feel good here and I don't want to finish on a season like that. I left Lille [in 2012] as a boss and I'd like to leave Chelsea as a boss, if I do leave one day."
The question was specifically about PSG's interest ("not part of my plans", said Eden), but the bit about leaving Chelsea on a high note is exactly what he said a couple weeks ago as well, when he declared that he's 99% sure he's staying at Chelsea. Consistency!
When asked about Chelsea's "complicated" season (his words, not theirs), Hazard was at a loss on what exactly went wrong, but he did set the record straight on Mourinho and that infamous shirt exchange with Angel Di Maria.
"It created quite a buzz. If I had scored the goal of qualification [to the next round], we would not have said anything. But when it goes less well, target players are quickly criticized. [...] Honestly, I have to say that it was he who asked for my shirt (laughs). Wouahhh! I did not expect this. When a player like that who asks me for my shirt, I exchange it. I did not tell him to wait until the dressing room... It happened instinctively. Like when I play, the exchange of jerseys was instinctive."
While perhaps one would expect a player as experienced as Hazard to have a bit more awareness in that situation, it certainly wasn't the first tone-deaf thing he had ever done. I guess that's just our Hazard!
"At the end, the atmosphere was a bit heavy. On one side, we did not want [Mourinho] to go because we had lived beautiful things together; but on the other hand we said that if he left it would perhaps be quieter. And that's what happened. But Mourinho is the best coach. Two super beautiful seasons we lived. He gave us a lot, he gave us confidence."
-Eden Hazard; source: TF1
Mourinho's sacking didn't exactly make everything right at Chelsea, but as others had touched on as well, most notably John Obi Mikel, the atmosphere around the club did improve tangibly. I guess that's good.
In any case, hopefully we won't have to worry about shirt exchanges and heavy atmospheres or any other such sideshows this coming season and we can get back to the business of winning and creating high notes.