Last Updated: 30/01/19 10:15am
Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has said Eden Hazard is free to leave the club if he wants to.
Sarri wants Hazard to stay but does not think the club should stand in the Belgian’s way if he would prefer to move on.
Hazard has long been linked with a move to Spanish side Real Madrid and has said in the past that he would be interested in a move to the reigning Champions League holders.
But Chelsea are looking to renew Hazard’s contract, which expires next season, and the west London side risk losing him for free in 2020, if he does not extend his current deal.
January 31, 2019, 6:00am
However, while Sarri says Chelsea will definitely not be parting with youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi, who has been the target of bids from Bayern Munich, the manager says Hazard is entitled to decide his own future.
“The situation of Eden is different,” Sarri told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League clash at Bournemouth.
“Eden is 28. If he wants to go, I think he has to go.
“Of course, I hope the opposite, I hope he wants to stay here.
“He has the potential to be the best player in Europe at the moment.”
Hazard joined Chelsea in 2012 and has enjoyed great success at Stamford Bridge, playing a key role in two Premier League title wins and last season’s FA Cup success.
The 28-year-old has 10 goals and 10 assists in the Premier League this season, despite occasionally playing in a ‘false nine’ role rather than his usual position on the wing.
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