In Brief

Chelsea transfer news: Eden Hazard is interested in Real Madrid move

Belgium captain waits to see what happens with Chelsea boss Antonio Conte

Belgian ace Eden Hazard has given a brazen interview in which he admits he’s thinking about leaving Chelsea for Real Madrid.

Hazard dropped the bombshell during a chat with French sports daily L’Equipe in which he was asked about his future plans, Goal.com reports.

“I do not want to talk about transfers right now,” he replied, before going on to talk about transfers.

“As I said before, I won everything in London except the Champions League. If I’m here in my career, it’s thanks to Chelsea. It would be too easy to say ‘I want to leave because I have done everything’.”

So why might Hazard, who yesterday helped Belgium kick-off their World Cup campaign with a 3-0 defeat of Panama, want to leave Stamford Bridge after six years with the Blues?

“I would really like to know what will happen at the club next year,” he said, a reference to the uncertainty surrounding the fate of manager Antonio Conte. “I am waiting to see if the coach stays or leaves. If I stay, it will be because the team will be better than the season we have just had. I do not want to stay if we are less good.”

When L’Equipe asked him about the rumours linking him with a move to Spain and the European champions, the 27-year-old replied: “Real Madrid can interest me, everyone knows it.”

According to Goal.com “no contract extension has been put in place” by Chelsea and that’s increased speculation that Hazard might be on his way once the World Cup is done and dusted.

The Daily Express claims that Chelsea “are desperate to keep Hazard” but Madrid will make a concerted effort to prise him from London. That will likely involve a transfer fee “north of £100m” but that is money Madrid are willing to pay, particularly if, as expected, they sell Gareth Bale in the coming weeks.

As for Conte, the Daily Star is one of several outlets to claim that the Italian will soon be replaced as manager by former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri.

Apparently Chelsea are in talks with Conte about the terms of his contract termination, and once they are concluded Sarri will be officially unveiled as the new boss with Gianfranco Zola his assistant.

The Star, citing Italian outlet CalcioNapoli24, says “an agreement between the two clubs is expected in the next few hours”, with Chelsea paying Napoli £4.4m as compensation.

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