Hazard wins Premier League goal of the month award for February

Chelsea star Eden Hazard has picked up the February award for Premier League Goal of the Month after his brilliant run and finish put Arsenal to the sword in the 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge.

Hazard was a popular selection chosen from the combined votes of a panel of experts and the public, seeing off competition from Leicester City’s Danny Drinkwater and Burnley new boy Robbie Brady to scoop the second prize of the year.

Hazard has been instrumental in helping the Blues develop a commanding lead at the top, and after scoring a sublime opener in the 2-1 win at West Ham, the diminutive playmaker has been recognised for another excellent strike.

With the Blues leading 1-0 against the Gunners on February 4, Hazard picked up the ball on the halfway line with plenty of work to do.

He looked up and embarked on a solo run which took him past Laurent Koscielny and then left Francis Coquelin on the floor before skirting beyond the Arsenal captain again and firing past Petr Cech for his third goal in his previous four home games.

It was a decisive contribution from the Belgian in what could prove a season-defining moment, with his celebrations after the magnificent effort showing the significance of the strike.

‘It is one of the best Premier League goals I have scored for sure,’ Hazard said. ‘I was not thinking about scoring but step by step I came close to the goal and in the last 10 metres I was alone.
‘When the ball went in I felt that I created something special so I was happy.’

Hazard is the second Chelsea player to win the award this campaign, after Pedro’s goal against Tottenham earned the November prize.

Chelsea are 10 points clear of Tottenham and Manchester City and need 24 points from their last 11 Premier League games, but they will turn their focus on sealing a FA Cup semi-final place against Manchester United on Monday.

Meanwhile, the Belgian has underlined his commitment to the Blues amid renewed interest from Real Madrid.

The 26-year-old stated earlier this season that he would only entertain the idea of leaving Stamford Bridge if he won the Premier League title again – an eventuality that could come to fruition this May.
Hazard said: ‘If I ever leave, it’ll be after winning a championship. You need to go out on a high so that people remember you for the right reasons.’

But despite the likelihood of Antonio Conte’s side not being caught at the summit, Hazard will not push through a move to the Bernabeu this summer, with three years remaining on his current Chelsea contract.

‘I Was Like a Ghost’ – Hazard Reflects on Chelsea Struggles in 2015-16

The Belgian forward admits he wants ‘to be the best again’ after enduring a tough time as the reigning PFA Player of the Year last season

Eden Hazard’s transformation from Premier League title winner and PFA Player of the Year to Chelsea also-ran surprised the Belgian as much as it did those watching from afar.

The talented forward enjoyed a sparkling 2014-15 campaign, with a 19-goal haul from 52 appearances in all competitions seeing him land prestigious personal and collective honours.

 

He was, however, to endure a humbling fall from grace last season, alongside many of his Stamford Bridge colleagues.

Hazard – having been billed as a contender to challenge Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo for the right to be called the best player on the planet – was a shadow of his former self as he was forced to wait until January before opening his 2015-16 goal account.

The 26-year-old admits he performed “like a ghost” as the Blues stumbled their way to a 10th-place finish in the Premier League.

He has been back on form this season, though, and is setting his sights of more major silverware, with nine goals added to a cause that has Chelsea sat five points clear at the top of the table.

Hazard told Fox Sports: “I learned a lot [from last season].

 

“Sometimes you are at the top like we were two years ago and sometimes it is difficult for everyone.

“For me, I was the best player two years ago, but last season I was like a ghost.

“I want to be the best again and win titles.”

It is not just the English top-flight crown that Hazard has in sights, though, with the FA Cup very much there to be shot at.

Chelsea have enjoyed considerable success in the competition in recent times – emerging victorious four times in six seasons between 2007 and 2012 – but Hazard only joined after the most recent of those triumphs and is yet to get his hands on the famous trophy.

 

On the back of a 4-1 third round victory over Peterborough on Sunday, he added: “The league is important, but the FA Cup even more as I’ve never won it.

“So I hope that this season I can win this trophy as I have won the league and the League Cup – now I just need the FA Cup.”

 

Source: goal.com

Eden Hazard Eyes Ballon d’Or Award

Chelsea playmaker, Eden Hazard, has admitted that he wants to win the Ballon d’Or prize next year.

The Belgian’s form dipped dramatically, after he won the PFA Player of the Year award, as the Blues clinched the Premier League title in 2014/2015 season.

Hazard has rediscovered his form under Antonio Conte and scored twice, as Chelsea hammered Everton 5-0 on Saturday .

The brace took his Premier League tally to seven goals in 11 matches this term, having only netted four times in 2015-16.

“Last season I was not good, so for me it was normal that I was not on the list,” Hazard said.

“But I want to come back on the list, and give everything to be on the list, not to be in the top 23 but to be in the top five.

“Yes, I want to reach that level.”

“Last season was difficult for me. I tried to be the same player that I was two years ago,” he added.

“But now I am trying to play like when I was a kid. I am enjoying playing now, my position is a bit different from before, I go inside more. It gives me more freedom, and I’m good for the moment.

“Conte has not change a lot, it is just that I have a little bit more freedom when we have the ball and without the ball.

“Because I don’t need to defend against the right-back, because Marcos Alonso is there. I just focus on staying in my position. And when I have the ball I have more freedom and I can go where I want to go, and be decisive.”

Thierry Henry Becomes Belgium Assistant Coach

Former France star Thierry Henry has been named as the new assistant coach of Belgium, the national coach announced Roberto Martinez announced on Friday.

“Thierry is an important figure. He will bring something different. He agreed right away to join us,” said Martinez, who was appointed at the start of the month to succeed the sacked Marc Wilmots.

C. Ronaldo Picks His Next Generation Of Superstars

The Real Madrid star, who turned 30 in February, has named five players he thinks have the potential to replicate his achievements in football, including a Barcelona rival

Cristiano Ronaldo has picked five young players he considers the most promising in football today.

Ronaldo was heralded as a teenager with great potential when he arrived at Manchester United for just over £12 million in 2003.

He went on to win three Premier League titles and the Champions League whilst at Old Trafford before moving to Real Madrid.

The Portugal international won the Champions League again with Madrid and claimed another league title in 2011-12, and is also among an elite group of players including Lionel Messi, Johan Cruyff, Michel Platini and Marco van Basten to have won the Ballon d’Or three or more times.

In an interview with BT Sport, Ronaldo has named the young stars he believes could follow in his footsteps.

“You see many players with potential, I will mention [Martin] Odegaard of Madrid for example,” he said. “At 16 he’s still young but you can see he’s a very good player.

“[Eden] Hazard for example, the No.7 of Manchester, [Memphis] Depay is a good player too. [Also Paul] Pogba and maybe Neymar.”