Maurizio Sarri has confirmed that Eden Hazard is ready to start for Chelsea against Newcastle United on Sunday.
Hazard has featured in both of Chelsea’s opening Premier League fixtures against Huddersfield Town and Arsenal, but only as a substitute.
He provided an assist in both, only Manchester City’s Benjamin Mendy can boast more than Hazard’s assist tally in Europe’s top five leagues at the time of writing.
Hazard was superb for Belgium at the World Cup and would no doubt have won the player of the tournament award if Roberto Martinez’s side progressed to the final.
The 27-year-old didn’t get his dream move to Real Madrid over the summer, but he’s not sulked, he’s got his head down and worked hard. Credit to him for that.
Hazard is now ready to compete from the beginning, which is excellent news for us. Sarri confirmed this news during his pre-match presser. He’s quoted by the Mirror saying:
“Eden is ready for 50-60 minutes. I don’t know for 90 minutes. But he can start.”
However, the gaffer added that just because Hazard is in the right shape to start, and is keen to do so, it doesn’t necessarily mean he will:
“Maybe he does want to start. But it is my mind that is more important. I am happy with him. He wants to play. I think it’s the right way to think for him. But I have to think for everybody.”
We trust Maurizio to make the right decision here – which is start Hazard. We’d love to see him back his first goal of the season against former boss Rafa Benitez.