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Eden Hazard Chelsea ‘return’ confirmed ahead of Arsenal with huge Mauricio Pochettino boost

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Chelsea fans are set to celebrate one of their favourite sons after Eden Hazard announced his premature retirement from football aged just 32. The former Blues winger ended his four-year stay with Real Madrid earlier this year, terminating his contract 12 months early, and has now called time on his playing days..…CONTINUE.FULL.READING>>>……CONTINUE READING>>>

Hazard had offers to extend his career but the Belgian forward has chosen to hang up his boots having failed to find form or fitness since his departure from Stamford Bridge in 2019. As the tributes and messages of Hazard tales flowed in on Monday it will be remembered by many as Eden Hazard.

Making the decision public on the 10th day of the 10th month also felt iconic for Hazard who wore the No.10 jersey at Chelsea from 2014 onwards, becoming one of the club’s most successful players ever. Winning the league title twice, achieving levels of play that very few have managed in blue and capturing the imagination of all who watched him, Hazard goes down as a true Chelsea legend.

He was the club’s best player for near enough the entire seven-year stay in London, scoring over 100 goals and falling just shy of 100 assists. To denigrate him just the stats is not enough though with his infectious character and beaming smile often lighting up games just as much as his trickery and dribbling.

On top of this was a player who managed to bring his all and remain largely consistent – 2015/16 aside, he scored or assisted at least 20 goals in every season he played from the age of 20 to 28 – and did it across six different managers. Above it all he was a truly likeable person that refused to take himself, his ability or the game too seriously, bringing him down to the level of supporters.

Already a fan favourite due to all of this and some unforgettable moments and goals, Hazard also loved to turn it on against Arsenal. The seven goals he scored in 19 games against the Gunners isn’t bettered in another fixture and his three assists made him a constant pest.

It is fitting, then, that Hazard has this decision in the build up to Mauricio Pochettino and Chelsea’s biggest test of the season. After the international break the Blues host Arsenal at Stamford Bridge – the setting for perhaps Hazard’s best ever goal – and the news of his retirement has only spurred fans on to make it an even more special occasion.

With three wins on the bounce – the first time this has happened since March – and a feeling of newfound positivity around SW6, Chelsea fans are hoping to mark the game with a fitting tribute to Hazard. After multiple requests from fans it has been confirmed that there are plans to unveil Hazard’s banner once more.

Along with Reece James and Thiago Silva, Chelsea often parade banners created by the supporters in the Matthew Harding End and made one of Hazard doing his customary knee slide a common fixture at games. With two weeks to prepare but plenty of work to do, plans to have the banner shown off before the game are in progress.

Hazard isn’t thought to have been back at Stamford Bridge for any matches since he left other than those that he played in for Real Madrid as the two sides went head-to-head in the Champions League three years in a row. There have been calls for him to make a physical return to the ‘Garden of Eden’ though ahead of the game.

Even if there is no Hazard in person and the banner is the sole tribute it is still likely to boost the morale and atmosphere at the stadium with thoughts drifting back to the days under Hazard whereby Chelsea were consistently favourites in this match and won more than they lost. Since Hazard left the tide has changed but there’s nothing like a bit of nostalgia to get things going the other way once more.…CONTINUE.FULL.READING>>>

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