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Eden for the exit? Conte admits Hazard may not be at Chelsea for next season

Date Posted,April 29, 2017

Antonio Conte has admitted he cannot guarantee Eden Hazard will still be a Chelsea player next season.

The Premier League leaders can take “a strong step” towards reclaiming the title by winning at Goodison Park on Sunday – the toughest fixture in their remaining five games.

A single point will guarantee a return to the Champions League, but whether Hazard will be part of the next campaign has been thrown into fresh doubt this week.

There have been renewed claims in Spain that the Belgian will become the latest €100m Real Madrid Galactico this summer. Or it could be David De Gea, Paulo Dybala or Kylian Mbappe.

Asked if Hazard will remain a Chelsea player, Conte said: “I think that it’s impossible for me to take this responsibility, but not only for Eden but for every single player. In this situation it’s the club who have the final decision.

Conte’s side can take a huge step towards the title at Goodison (Photo: Darren Walsh)
Hazard will again be key (Photo: Reuters)

“I don’t think that this idea is in the mind of the club (to sell Hazard). I think we have to improve the team, to reinforce the team. But you know that, in football, there is also the will of the player. The future, I haven’t a crystal ball, no.”

The Spanish giants signed Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez when they were the best players in the Premier League. Could Roman Abramovich’s club reject their money?

“I think that everything is possible, everything is possible in football,” Conte added.

Hazard has a contract in West London till 2020 and has not agitated for a pay rise with Chelsea are ready to make him the best paid Premier League player in the summer.

“I’m not surprised because I think Eden is very happy to stay with us and work with us,” said the Blues boss. “I think his family is very happy to stay here and play for this team, for this club.

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