Does Eden Hazard hold the key to Antonio Conte's future at Chelsea?

He is a world-class talent and arguably, one of the most influential players in the Premier League. I wonder if Eden Hazard now holds the...

He is a world-class talent and arguably, one of the most influential players in the Premier League. I wonder if Eden Hazard now holds the key to the future of Antonio Conte at Chelsea?

It's simple really, Chelsea MUST do everything possible to keep hold of Eden Hazard beyond the summer if we are to mount a serious challenge this season to get back into the top four and beyond. If he is sold then for me it would send a clear message that we should no longer consider ourselves a team that wants to challenge for the title, but to settle for top four.

So to Antonio Conte and his future which I have also written about here this morning, as time goes by with literally nothing from Chelsea so far this summer, and the fact that the transfer window closes on August 11th BEFORE the start of the new Premier League season, I just wonder if Chelsea are happy to stick with what they have in the dressing room and with the coaching staff?

Does Eden Hazard play a part in all that? Well it's clear if you think about it that Hazard has been given exactly what he wanted from a head-coach/manager when the Italian took over two seasons ago - freedom. He was given freedom to roam out-wide, to come inside and play as a false-nine or to play in his favourite position which is a number ten in behind the main striker.

For the most part (not including where the false-nine last season fell apart in certain games) Eden Hazard has responded and has gotten back to being the person we fell in love with at Stamford Bridge. He had an outstanding season two seasons ago as Antonio Conte led us to the title and last season was another good one personally for the Belgian play-maker.

Before the World Cup started in Russia the press had consistently asked Hazard of the plans for his future beyond the summer and he responded by saying that he wanted to see what happened at Chelsea, who would be in charge before he decided what to do. He wanted to see that there was/would be an improvement this coming season compared to last year before he made his decision and once again re-iterated that he still had a couple of seasons left on his contract. He added that if he needed to leave the club he would.

I sincerely hope that Antonio Conte and Roman Abramovich have sorted out whatever differences they had last season to prepare for an all-out assault on the title this time around. We read reports that Eden Hazard had rejected a whopping £340,000 per week offer from Chelsea to stay here but I am not so sure that an offer was made ahead of the World Cup and if Hazard would reject it if Antonio Conte was to remain here.

One thing is clear no matter who is in charge - Eden Hazard needs to stay here and if that is something that can sorted as quickly as possible then I would expect Antonio Conte to do the same.

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