Chelsea and Newcastle have been ‘sounded out’ over the idea of bringing Eden Hazard back to England in a cut-price January deal, claims a report.
Hazard, 30, has failed to hit the heights that he reached at Chelsea with Real Madrid. The Belgian forward was signed for a reported €100m in 2019, but tangible returns have been negligible at the Bernabeu.
Indeed, amid poor form and fitness, Hazard has notched just five goals and nine assists from 52 games in all competitions with Los Blancos.
Those figures are a far cry from the ones he was regularly putting up at Stamford Bridge. And as a result, Real boss Carlo Ancelotti recently delivered a damning review of Hazard’s situation.
“The problem [Hazard] has right now is he has a coach who prefers another player,” Ancelotti said on Tuesday (via ESPN).
“That can happen in a squad like Real Madrid’s. What’s important is the player has the motivation to work to play. He is doing that.”
With Hazard’s career in Spain stalling, a new ESPN report has claimed he could be on the move in January.
They state both Newcastle and Chelsea have been ‘sounded out’ over their interest in acquiring Hazard.
Real are reportedly looking to make space for their anticipated pursuits of Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland next summer. While Mbappe won’t require a transfer fee given his impending free agent status, it’s acknowledged his signing-on fee and salary will be astronomical.
Precisely whether Chelsea or cash-rich Newcastle are interested in signing Hazard is unstated. Indeed, whether the player himself wishes to call time on his Real career is also unknown.
Though if a return to the Premier League is deemed workable on both ends, Hazard could reportedly be available for as little as €50m.
In name value alone, Hazard would certainly represent a marquee signing Newcastle will likely be looking to make in January.
Chelsea draft three-man shortlist to replace Thiago Silva
Meanwhile, Chelsea reportedly have three names in mind as they look to replace veteran defender Thiago Silva in 2022.
At 36, Silva’s Stamford Bridge fairytale will not last forever. Chelsea have a strict policy for players such as Silva that are over the age of 30. They tend to only put one-year contracts on the table. That means the centre-back could leave once his current deal expires in June.
Recent reports state that he could re-join Fluminense in his home country. It would give Silva the chance to end his career back at where it began.
With a potential exit on the cards, The Daily Mail, citing Eurosport, claim that the Blues are keeping tabs on three highly-rated central defenders.
The first name on the three-man shortlist is Sevilla’s Jules Kounde. He is already one of their top players and is starting to make his mark on the French national team. Chelsea submitted a significant bid for him this year but had it knocked back. Sevilla chief Monchi revealed that they did not meet his €80m (£67.4m) price tag.
The other two players named were Juventus’ Matthijs De Ligt and Villarreal’s Pau Torres.