Chelsea winger Eden Hazard says that all of the West London club’s players are behind Leicester’s bid for the title as none of them want Tottenham Hotspur, their London rivals, to win the Premier League.
Spurs are currently eight points off Leicester and have four games left to play, meaning that they need to win all of their remaining fixtures and hope that the Foxes drop points in the run in. Leicester’s 4-0 win over Swansea City at The King Power Stadium this weekend means that they only have three games left to play, giving Spurs a game in hand.
The defending Premier League champions could yet have a big say in the destiny of the trophy they have been the custodians of for the last year. The London derby is scheduled to take place at Stamford Bridge on May the 2nd, whilst Leicester are heading there on the final day of the season.
Speaking to the BBC’s Match Of The Day, Hazard said, “The fans, the club, the players, we don’t want Tottenham to win the Premier League. We hope for Leicester because they deserve to be champions this season. We have a good game next week against Tottenham and if we can beat them it will be good”.
The 25-year-old was named as the Player Of The Year for 2015 but he has failed to hit the same heights during this campaign. He did score a brace against Bournemouth at the weekend, but they were the first league goals he’s managed this season.
Hazard’s team-mate, Cesc Fabregas, confirmed the Belgian’s opinion that the rest of the Chelsea team are right behind Leicester’s title bid. Fabregas has additional history to his rivalry with Spurs, having played for their North London rivals Arsenal for eight years from 2003 until 2011.
Speaking to Sky Sports the Spanish international said he thinks the game against Chelsea and Leicester on the last day of the season will be something of a dead rubber. He said, “I believe they’ll have it wrapped up by then. Spurs are pushing hard to get as close to them as possible but I think Leicester will win it and deservedly. I don’t want Spurs to win it and, for what they’ve done through the season, I would love Leicester to win the Premier League”.
The Match Of The Day pundits who were present in the studio after the interview with Hazard aired were torn about the value of the Belgian’s comments. Martin Keown, who used to play for Spurs and Chelsea’s London rivals Arsenal, believes that the comments will give Tottenham’s players extra motivation heading into the game against them. He said, “The Tottenham players are probably listening to that right now and it’s goading them”.
Fellow pundit and former Newcastle player Shola Ameobi agreed with Keown, saying, “It’s been a tough year for Hazard, so for him to come out with a comment like that is unbelievable really. Surely he should be focussing on what he can do for Chelsea”.
But former Spurs player Jermaine Jenas defended the Chelsea player and said, “What do you expect Hazard to say? He’s not going to say he wants Spurs to win now is he? It’s what everyone knows; there is that obvious rivalry between Chelsea and Spurs. But if Spurs keep doing what they’re doing now I don’t give Chelsea much of a chance in that game anyway”.
Tottenham play West Brom tonight before visiting Stamford Bridge next weekend, the day after Leicester travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United. Leicester then host Everton at The King Power on the 7th of May before Southampton play Spurs at White Hart Lane on the 8th. Leicester then face Chelsea at the Bridge on the final day of the season, with Spurs heading to relegation strugglers Newcastle United at the same time.