Not many enjoy the privilege to play with the best in the world and this is something that Ross Barkley knows all too well. No, we’re not talking about Gareth Barry and neither is it Marcos Alonso. Of course, the Chelsea midfielder is referring to none other than Eden Hazard.
Having impressed for Belgium at the World Cup, Hazard continued his superb form in the new campaign, scoring goals for fun and leaving Premier League defences eat dust whenever he goes on one of his trademark bamboozling runs in the final third. Truly, the Belgian ace is a spectacle to behold.
Yet consuming Hazard as a spectator nowhere near compares to sharing the pitch with him. This, precisely, is what Barkley experienced when the two lined up together against Southampton last weekend. Against the Saints, Hazard reaffirmed his status as a world beater, adding another goal and an assist to what has been a blistering start to his Blues campaign.
Naturally, the best are always attached to transfer rumours and the 27-year-old forward is no exception. When quizzed about Real Madrid’s long-standing interest in him, Hazard did not mince his words when he said it was his dream since he was a kid to play in the white shirt of Los Merengues.
It was no surprise then that Barkley, longing to spend more seasons with the Belgian ace on the pitch, quickly expressed his will for Hazard to snub Real Madrid’s advances and stay at west London while also proceeding to wax lyrical about the Chelsea forward.
“He’s a magnificent player. You can see how he started the season and the World Cup that he had, you don’t get many players like him,” said the England international. “He’s capable of magic at any moment and to hear the things that he’s said, it’s great for me to get to hear a player like that say so many great things about myself.
“It’s important [he stays] because he’s been at Chelsea for a long time. He’s achieved so much. But I can’t speak for Eden. He knows in his mind what he wants but I’d love to play with him for many more years.”
While Hazard has indicated he is currently happy at Stamford Bridge, a new contract offer, believed to be worth £300,000 a week, is yet to be signed by the Blues ace. It remains to be seen whether Barkley gets his wish to come true.