Eden Hazard helped Chelsea to the Premier League title last season, scoring 19 goals across all competitions and winning no less than six player of the year awards along the way. This was all too simple for the 25-year-old Belgian. So this season he has implemented the more complex and abnormal strategy of never scoring goals.
“A few Chelsea players have tried this approach over the years,” said Hazard after successfully going 77 minutes without scoring in the second leg of Chelsea’s Champions League round of 16 loss to PSG, where he was also able to carry out his other new strategy of leaving matches early with an abstract injury and heading directly for the tunnel. “Fernando Torres was probably the most notable, but none have managed to turn a complete absence of goals into wins. Despite being eliminated from the Champions League, I still think I can do it.”
Hazard’s commitment to this odd plan has been unwavering in both the Premier League and the Champions League, where he has scored exactly zero goals this season. However, he did struggle in the FA Cup, scoring against MK Dons and then Man City last month.
Despite these setbacks, he remains determined to see his approach through to the end of the season. Which has been made easier by the fact that Chelsea have been eliminated from every competition aside from the FA Cup and Premier League, where they have mounted something of a comeback in recent months.
“I convinced Diego Costa to join me in not scoring goals at the start of the season,” Hazard added. “But then we began to lose and he was worried that it was our fault. Thankfully the board saw that it was actually all Jose Mourinho’s fault. Under Guus Hiddink, I’ve maintained my commitment to not scoring, and we haven’t lost a Premier League match since Jose left. That can’t be a coincidence. I don’t know why PSG beat us, but I bet if Zlatan and Cavani didn’t score so many goals, they would’ve won by more.”
Asked if he thinks his current approach will prevent his chances of a big money move to Real Madrid, Hazard said: “Not at all. Cristiano Ronaldo scored against Roma and still fans at the Bernabeu jeered him. It’s clear that they want someone who doesn’t score goals. Someone like me.”