Chelsea have started the 2018/19 season in the best possible way as they have picked up maximum points from their opening four matches, a points tally matched only by Liverpool and surprisingly Watford. It comes as no shock that Eden Hazard has been in scintillating form for the Blues since his return from a near-perfect World Cup and his team-mate Antonio Rudiger has claimed that the ex-Lille winger is currently playing better than Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar.
Hazard’s blistering start to the campaign seems to have continued into the international break as he was head and shoulders above anyone on the pitch in Belgium’s 4-0 demolition of Scotland. He scored a fantastic goal and got an assist in a man of the match performance. Rudiger has said that only Lionel Messi is better than his superstar team-mate. “(Kylian) Mbappe is unbelievably fast, really good,” he said in an interview.
“To stop him, you have to do it as a team, because alone… good luck. But for me, the best in the world is Messi, then Hazard.”
Hazard did say that he wanted to compete with Ronaldo and Messi as the world’s best when he arrived at Chelsea for £32 million in 2012 and with the former struggling to settle in at Juventus, his dream is becoming reality.
The conversation wasn’t just about the 2014/15 PFA Player of the Year as it shifted onto Rudiger’s pleasant surprise at his side’s good start under Maurizio Sarri.
“I’m surprised how well we’ve done because players like Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante had big World Cups and came back late for training. They are in good shape and that’s impressive.”
As much as that is credit to the two players themselves, it also acknowledges the work done by the German defender’s past and current manager in ensuring they were mentally ready for another tough season. Hazard is next in action on Tuesday night as his country travel to Iceland for their first UEFA Nations League clash.