In Brief

Chelsea transfer news: Eden Hazard’s Real Madrid ‘dream’

Belgium star admits he’s torn between the Bridge and the Bernabeu

Eden Hazard had dropped what commentators are describing as a “bombshell” on Chelsea by admitting he’s torn between staying loyal to Stamford Bridge and fulfilling a childhood dream of playing for Real Madrid.

The brilliant Belgian has been in barnstorming form this season, netting seven times for the Blues as they challenge Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table.

The Sun reports that the 27-year-old “is ready to start formal talks over a new contract” - but has hinted that if the outcome isn’t to his satisfaction then it might be time to head to the Bernabeu.

With Hazard’s current £200,000-a-week deal set to expire at the end of the 2019-20 season, Maurizio Sarri is said to be telling the Chelsea board to pay the midfielder whatever he wants to secure his loyalty into the next decade.

Willing to talk

“If they come to me then I will talk,” said Hazard, in widely reported comments to media. “I don’t want to say that I am not talking with the club or the owner, I am talking a lot with them.”

But he is also considering starting a new life and a new challenge in a new league. “Sometimes in my head I wake up in the morning and think I want to go,” Hazard confessed. “Sometimes I think I want to stay. It is a hard decision. It is my future. I am 27 and I will turn 28 in January.”

Madrid dream

It’s no secret where Hazard would one day like to play. He admitted: “Real Madrid is the best club in the world. I don’t want to lie. It is my dream since I was a kid. I was dreaming about this club. We will see.

“I don’t want to talk about this every day. I don’t have time but we will talk about my future soon. I think so.”

The Sun says that Hazard was close to calling it quits at Chelsea during Antonio Conte’s reign but that since the arrival of Sarri he has been “won over by the new man’s charm and tactics”.

Hazard headlines

How the UK newspapers reported the story.

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