Chelsea fans were taken aback as Roberto Martinez admitted there’s a small chance he could include Eden Hazard in Belgium’s squad for the side’s upcoming World Cup qualifiers.
Hazard missed Chelsea’s entire pre-season and the 26-year-old is yet to make an appearance in the Premier League this term after undergoing ankle surgery earlier this summer.
The Blues are hopeful the attacker will make his return when Antonio Conte’s side travel to the King Power Stadium to face Leicester City on September 9.
With Conte’s squad already thin on the ground, Chelsea are desperate to wrap Hazard up in cotton wool until he reaches full fitness but Belgium’s manager worried fans by hinting that the star forward could be including in his squad.
‘He isn’t 100 per cent fit yet. The next two days will be crucial,’ Martinez told Voetbalkrant ahead of Belgium’s clashes with Gibraltar (August 31) and Greece (September 3).
Hazard picked up his ankle injury while on international duty with Belgium back at the beginning of June.
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Chelsea make another unacceptable bid for Danny Drinkwater — report
In the midst of a lopsided transfer market where a £70 million striker is heralded as a “bargain”, Chelsea are still trying to haggle over a couple deals as we look to reinforce the squad before the summer transfer window closes. The current main target appears to be Leicester City midfielder Danny Drinkwater, who is supposedly keen to join but isn’t exactly being shoved out the door by his current employers.
According to the Daily Mail, Chelsea have offered £30 million in the latest approach for Drinkwater, which is double our initial bid of £15 million yet still £10 million away from Leicester’s £40 million valuation. And the 2015-16 Premier League champions seem intent on receiving the full price for N’Golo Kanté’s former midfield partner.
Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare is more than happy to keep Drinkwater, as well as Riyad Mahrez, who’s also been linked with moves away all summer.
“I’ve read the speculation the same as you but until we get the bids accepted, there’s no difference for me. We carry on with them. All the time we’re talking about the speculation. We’ll carry on as normal until I’m told otherwise.”
“I’ve said that your worst fear is that an acceptable bid comes in, but if it does, we have to deal with it. Until it does, we have no decision to make.”
-Craig Shakespeare; Source: Daily Mail
Chelsea are still “promising” new signings to address our worries over squad depth, with Drinkwater consistently named. Still, there doesn’t seem to be too much actual progress made on any front. With deadline day approaching, it’s high time to “step up” these efforts.