Should Chelsea be happy or disheartened by Hazard’s outlook?
The Blues 14/15 player of the year had a candid interview with Sport/Foot Magazine where he revealed that he is aware of the differences between himself and the two titans of La Liga:
“I often ask myself what I can do to become like Messi and Ronaldo and score 50 or 60 goals in a season. I try of course, but I realize that I will never be a true scorer. It’s not in me. It is mainly mental—at 2-0, not thinking that is enough, for example. Sometimes I still think, after a goal, ‘that’s enough’.”
While it may be unsettling for a manager or fans to hear that from the Belgian star who propelled himself to new heights of fame (and comparison) in 2014/2015 with nineteen goals last year in Chelsea’s title run, there a few factors out of Hazard’s control it would benefit his mental game to acknowledge, the largest being that he does play under Jose Murinho.
Murinho is notorious for his ‘park the bus’ strategy when Chelsea goes up one or two goals on opponents. Hazard doesn’t have the attacking support from his fellow midfielders once Chelsea establishes a lead to notch a surplus. A change of philosophy could lead to Hazard tallying more goals, but Chelsea won the title last year employing the same tactics. Besides, scoring records aren’t a motivator for Hazard:
“I’m not in search of records like some other players…if I can score between 15 and 20 goals each season, I will be very happy.”
Chelsea is hopeful that Hazard gets on his happy streak soon. The club currently sits thirteenth on the EPL table and the twenty-four year old has yet to open his account. His head seems to be in the right place though:
“I’m at the peak of my career but I want to become even better every day. I’m not there yet.”
There isn’t much more to ask for from the talented midfielder except for a few brilliant strikes to help the former League Champions climb back up the table.