Posted on September 11th, 2018
Eden Hazard was fairly subdued by his standards in Chelsea’s dismal 2017-18 Premier League campaign under Antonio Conte and only scored 12 goals. This was his second-worst return since his debut season in the English top flight, but now it looks as though the Belgian could be back to his brilliant best. It could well be worth a punt on the Chelsea man winning the PFA Player of the Year award again at the end of this campaign.
At the time of writing, there is no standout contender for the coveted Player of the Year award, as it is still too early for bookies to anticipate who may steal the show. For that reason, Hazard can be backed at 8/1 in the Premier League betting to pick up the award. It may be wise to stake on the silky attacker now before he goes on a major scoring spree, though, as those odds could soon be slashed after a few more games.
Hazard looks as though he may be able to recapture the form he showed in the Blues’ previous title-winning campaign under Conte, where he scored 16 goals and registered nine assists. These were his best returns in a Chelsea shirt, but that season N’Golo Kante was deemed the standout performer. Thus, the Frenchman picked up the Player of the Year award on that occasion.
Only five players have managed to claim the accolade twice since its inception in the 1973-74 season. Mark Hughes, Alan Shearer, Thierry Henry, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Gareth Bale all claimed two trophies, and Hazard certainly has the talent to rub shoulders with that elite set of players. The Belgian picked up his first award in the 2014-15 campaign when he bagged 14 goals and 10 assists to help fire Chelsea to the title under Jose Mourinho.
One of Hazard’s main competitors for Player of the Year would normally be Kevin De Bruyne, but the Chelsea star’s fellow countryman is currently on the sidelines with a serious knee ligament injury. Seeing as Manchester City’s genius playmaker could be out for up to three months, the bookies have him as an outsider at 25/1 for the trophy. Harry Kane and Mohamed Salah could also be in contention, and the ferocious forwards are likely to be battling out for the Golden Boot once again.
Hazard looks like a rejuvenated player under new manager Maurizio Sarri, and is no doubt going to be the star of the show at Stamford Bridge this time out. At 27 years old, the technically gifted winger may feel that the time is right to push for a move to an elite club like Real Madrid. If he is to get his wish and play for the best in the world, he will have to impress this term for the Blues.
Hazard may well be about to embark on his best campaign ever at Chelsea, and backing him now to win the Player of the Year award could prove fruitful. Whatever happens, the slick attacker is going to be a pleasure to watch this season.