Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has been given a crucial piece of advice with regards to keeping hold of the Blues’ star player Eden Hazard following Real Madrid transfer speculation this summer.
The Belgium international has long been linked as a target for the Spanish giants, with the latest from Don Balon being that Madrid president Florentino Perez hopes loaning Mateo Kovacic to the club could help him in his long-term pursuit of the player in the future.
Hazard has been one of the best attacking players in the world in recent years and is not the kind of star name Chelsea would want to lose, with the west Londoners generally doing well to keep their top players during the Roman Abramovich era.
Sarri could be just the manager to get the best out of him and make him happy at Stamford Bridge as well, according to pundit Garth Crooks.
Writing in his BBC Sport column, Crooks explains that Sarri appears to be giving Hazard more freedom than his predecessors Antonio Conte and Jose Mourinho – and that that is crucial to making sure big players stick around.
‘Eden Hazard strolled through this game (against Newcastle) and was head and shoulders above everybody else on the pitch,’ Crooks wrote.
‘The Belgium international seems to have been given the freedom to do whatever he likes under Maurizio Sarri. Not so under Mourinho or Conte. Both Sarri’s predecessors had volatile temperaments and fragile relationships with Hazard.
‘For all of football’s rhetoric about sports science, fitness and the tactics of the modern game, there’s one thing that will never change. Managers need to take care of their best players or their best players will eventually desert them.’
CFC fans will hope the Italian continues to get the best out of Hazard and perhaps persuade him he doesn’t need to leave to fulfil his potential.