Chelsea coach Antonio Conte insists that moving Eden Hazard closer to goal coupled with his hard work has helped him rediscover his best form.
The Italian tactician has seen his side pick up four consecutive wins in the Premier League while also keeping four clean sheets in a row too as their form has dramatically improved.
It comes after Conte’s decision to switch to a 3-4-3 system, one that allows Hazard more freedom to attack while also not shirking away from his defensive responsibilities.
The Belgian international has responded with three games in three straight games, the first time in his career that he’s been able to do that, and Conte has revealed the tactical switch has helped him.
“Eden is playing now more close to the goal,” Conte said at his Friday press conference, as reported by ESPN FC. “He’s participating more in offensive situations.
“I think it’s better for him, this type of situation, which sees him staying in a position where he can finish easier compared to in the past. For this reason, I think and I want him to continue in this way.
“We know his talent. He’s a fantastic player. Also, I found a player who is working very well without the ball, working very well with the team. This is very appreciated by his teammates.”
Conte left the door open to the possibility of Hazard improving his game further to be mentioned alongside the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, but was more concerned with his attitude and approach to improving and being an integral part of Chelsea’s progress in the short term.
Hazard endured a difficult season last year, but with the 3-4-3 seemingly suiting him and bringing out his best characteristics, he’ll hope to maintain his good form for as long as possible and put those troubles firmly behind him to become a consistently decisive figure for Chelsea again.