Eden Hazard to Real Madrid is a story as old as time itself, but other than wasted ink, electrons, and breaths, nothing’s come of it since first mooted back in 2012 when Eden signed with the then Champions of Europe.
Europe’s premier competition is fairly important to Eden (though not the most important thing), but of course these days, seemingly only Real are allowed to win it. Chelsea won’t even be competing in it next season. Combined with Hazard’s age, contract situation, and various interpretations of various quotes, this might be the last summer this potential transfer has a realistic chance of becoming reality.
Hazard himself may not be pushing for it — he’s concentrating on the World Cup first and foremost as most in it are — but he’s made it clear that he wants to see some improvements at the club and so far, Chelsea have done literally nothing at all. The longer that drags on, especially if it extends beyond the World Cup, the more weight those quotes will take on. Madrid may be well stocked in Hazard’s position — Isco, Asensio, Bale, and apparently maybe Neymar, too — but many would like to see Eden step up to the biggest stage.
One of those people is Hazard’s father, who’s been a bit of troublemaker before and apparently tried to stir the pot last month as well. According to Marca, Thierry Hazard “made contact with Real Madrid to offer them the chance to sign [Eden]”. Given Thierry’s priors, with Eden having to come out in January to rubbish his own father’s claims about his contractual situation and a potential Real move, it’s hard to take these latest actions as anything more than further attempts to “feed the soap opera” as Belgium’s Le Soir put it. (Hazard does not have an official agent and usually represents himself, which is surely a rarity these days.)
But until that new contract is signed, the soap opera will continue and will threaten to turn into melodrama and then perhaps tragedy as well. To avoid that, Chelsea need to settle the head coaching situation, get the new contracts on the table and signed (Hazard, Courtois, Azpilicueta), and get to work in the transfer market as well.
The first pre-season match is in less than a month, and the season’s just around the corner after that. This summer was billed as the most important in the Roman Era, and so far, Chelsea are doing a spectacular job of treating is at the least important.
P.S.: To end on a happier note, here’s Didier Drogba taking note of Eden’s classic celebration the other day.