29th May, 2019
Serious celebrations broke out on Wednesday night as Chelsea won the European League Cup by defeating Arsenal 4-1 in far away Baku. It was however one tainted by a dark cloud over the likely exit from the club by star play-maker, Eden Hazard.
The team’s captain Cesar Azpilicueta has come out to say that Eden Hazard will “be a big loss” as the Europa League winners prepare to say farewell to their inspirational star play-maker.
Eden Hazard revealed the 4-1 victory over Arsenal on Wednesday is almost certain to mean “goodbye” with an expected switch to Real Madrid seemingly getting closer by the day.
It was surely a befitting victory in Baku as Olivier Giroud and winger Pedro also got on the score-sheet to help make the Belgium international’s potential goodbye appearance a memorable occasion.
It will be recalled that Eden Hazard joined Chelsea from Lille in 2012 and surely ranks as one of the London club’s greats, having won two Premier League titles and also enjoyed success in the FA Cup and Europe.
“It’s a big loss for us, as a player and as a person,” Azpilicueta told beIN Sports.
“We came here together seven years ago, we have won six trophies, it’s been amazing on and off the pitch for me.
“I can only wish him the best because he’s a very good friend of mine.
“The desire he’s shown on the pitch for the club, his behaviour as the star man, I think everybody in the club loves him.
“He’s not selfish – a lot of times I heard rumours about him leaving. In other situations maybe other players could push but he didn’t do it.
“I can only say all the best and we’re going to miss him.”
That is not the only dark cloud hanging over the Chelsea skies as team coach Maurizio Sarri’s future at Stamford Bridge is also uncertain amid links to the vacant Juventus post.
Sarri successfully guided Chelsea to a major trophy and Champions League qualification at the first attempt but, when asked whether the Chelsea head coach should stay, Azpilicueta noted the decision is out of his hands.
“It’s not my choice. Obviously Maurizio is the manager,” the Spanish full-back said.
“We started the season quite late. In February, March we were in difficulty, we were sixth in the Premier League and everybody thought we were out of the Champions League.
“We came back, we finished third… lifted the Europa League [and] lost on penalties in the Carabao Cup [final]. I think if you look at the whole season it has been very great.”