Speculations have been growing every day over the future of Chelsea forward, Eden Hazard. The Belgium international is being linked with a “dream” move to Real Madrid to team up with his childhood idol Zinedine Zidane. With Hazard’s current contract expiring in 2020, it is becoming more and more difficult for the Blues to keep him at Stamford Bridge especially as the club are in danger of missing out on UEFA Champions league qualification.
To make matters worse, the club are currently appealing a two-window transfer ban from FIFA.
Here, we would look at five players who could replace him should he eventually move.
5 Players Who Could Replace Eden Hazard at Chelsea
1. NICHOLAS PEPE
The 23-year-old Ivorian has attracted the interest of top European clubs this season with his impressive performances for LOSC Lille. His 19 goals and 11 assists in all competitions so far this season, has propelled his team to 2nd place in _ligue 1_ behind runaway leaders, PSG. He is undoubtedly one to watch out for at the 2019 AFCON in Egypt this summer as Ivory Coast is one of the favorites for the title. Lille have placed an astonishing €80 million on a player they signed for just €10 million from Angers two seasons ago.
2. CHRISTIAN PULISIC
Chelsea secured the £58 million signing of the USA international from Borrusia Dortmund in January and quickly loaned him back there till the end of the season. The 22-year-old who has seen his game time at the Signa Iduna Park limited this season due to injuries and the emergence of English hotshot, Jadon Sancho, will be hoping of hitting the ground running at Stamford Bridge next season.
3. DAVID NERES
The Ajax forward is having a breakthrough season in 2018/19. He has notched 12 goals and 12 assists in all competitions so far this season. His goals included decisive strikes against Real Madrid and Juventus in the Champions league to help the Dutch outfit reach the semifinals of the prestigious competition against all the odds. Neres made his international debut for Brazil in March against the Czech Republic and contributed with an assist. The 22-year-old will be hoping of boosting his rising profile by starring for Brazil at the 2019 Copa America this summer.
4. CALLUM HUDSON-ODOI
The 18-year-old youngster has seen his stock rise this season with some scintillating displays which prompted England manager, Gareth Southgate, to hand him his Three lions debut in March. Chelsea also rejected a €35 million bid for Odoi from Bayern Munich in January, with the Bavarian giants promising to come back for his services at the end of the season. Chelsea fans will be hoping to see a homegrown talent given a chance in the first team next season.
5. PAULO DYBALA
You are surprised to see this name on the list, especially as he is left-footed, right? But this season the 25-year-old Argentine has not been the same wizard we’ve seen in recent seasons. The deft footed forward has been most affected by the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo in Turin. He has had limited opportunities, and he is also being played out of position. Dybala might be seeking for greener pastures elsewhere as he looked unsettled in Turin. Maurizio Sarri might also consider the prospect of playing Dybala on the left side of Chelsea’s attack to compete with Willian or Pedro and then move Hudson-Odoi to his favorite position on the right, to compete with Christian Pulisic. Chelsea will have to break the bank to secure the signing of a player nicknamed, La joya (meaning THE JEWEL in English).
Other notable mentions include: Wilfred Zaha, Hirving Lozano, Lorenzo Insigne and Ousmane Dembele.
Please use the comment box below to express your thoughts on this piece. Thanks for your interest.