Being the most exciting young talent in French football is no longer enough for Lille star Eden Hazard. The Belgium international, who was a vital aspect of Lille’s historic Ligue 1 title winning campaign last season, announced he will leave the current champions for a bigger club at the end of the season.
Lille, despite losing some key players during the off season, especially Ivorian forward Gervinho, are doing rather well in the league, losing only once, placed third, six points behind league leaders Paris Saint-Germain, who are looking near unstoppable right now. Hazard, as of now, is the main reason Lille are still in the talk of title contention
The chance to play for Lille in the Champions League kept Hazard from leaving this summer already, but I guess going through half the experience, knowing the kind of money that awaits him outside of France (or maybe at PSG?) is a better incentive than anything Lille has to offer him.
Talking to L’Equipe, Hazard said I am ready to go to the next level at a big club. I won’t leave in January. It would be silly to do so. But it’s my last season at Lille. I stayed with Lille this year because I still had things to work on and prove. But now I’m ready. I feel able to play in another country.
So who will win his talents? Real Madrid have shown interest, and so have Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool. PSG are also keen on signing the attacking midfielder, but Hazard doesn’t seem too interested staying in France – Paris is not for now. Paris is magical, as they say. Of course it attracts me. But for now, no, I will not go there. I do not want to go to a rival of Lille’s in France. It would be inconsistent. The fans would not understand.
England is usually the preferred destination, unless Real Madrid come calling. Few have been able to refuse the call of that Siren.