Chelsea midfielder Eden Hazard has admitted that he wants to play as a number 10 but does not believe that the club will change their style of play enough to allow him to do it.
The Belgian played in a central position for his country in both of their World Cup qualifying matches during the international break, scoring in each game. Yet he’s not convinced that his club side’s new manager will adopt the same tactics as Roberto Martinez has for Belgium in order to allow him to play centrally.
The Italian has so far opted to stick Hazard on the left-hand side of the Chelsea since his arrival as the new head coach at Stamford Bridge, with the player suggesting the set-up of his international side suits his style of play more. Speaking to the Daily Mail the midfielder said that he is an attack-minded player and Belgium’s formation allows him to be on the front foot. He said, “I like to play as a No 10. I think I have more freedom offensively. For Belgium, we have full-backs who run hard and create a lot of space, which is good and I like to play there”.
Though Hazard was being slightly critical of the new man in the hot-seat at Stamford Bridge he still said he would give his all to help the side win; something he managed against the defending Premier League champions Leicester City at the weekend when he scored Chelsea’s second goal in a 3-0 win. He said, “I don’t know if I will play there at Chelsea. You need to ask the manager! I play on the left hand side and I try to do the best I can”.
The 25-year-old has operated on the left during various spells during his time in West London and excelled there. He is aware, however, that Conte rarely uses a formation that allows for a number 10, meaning that he will have to continue to do well from wide areas if he’s hoping to help the club enjoy some more success this year. He said, “It’s true I like to play as a 10. Sometimes at Chelsea we don’t play with [a] system with a No 10, too. I don’t think Chelsea wants to change just for me as a 10”.
Should Chelsea continue to suffer mixed results in the league and Hazard not be used in his favoured position then rumours about the midfielder’s future will undoubtedly begin to surface the closer we get to the January transfer window. The player himself insists his aim is to get back to the best form possible in the coming matches. He said, “I did well in the past as a left winger and, for now, I am trying to get back to that best again”.