LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 02: Eden Hazard of Belgium in the ball during the international friendly match between England and Belgium at Wembley Stadium on June 2, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Time to stop freaking out about Eden Hazard, methinks - the Belgian international had a French-language interview today where he clarified his rather terse announcement from last week, mentioning Chelsea by name as his destination and then praising the club's ambition. French Football Weekly, which you should be following on Twitter, was good enough to provide some translated excerpts for us:
Why Chelsea? I wanted to play in England, and I like their project, players coming in, good chance to start, my priority is to play. I want to play and going to Barca, Real, at only 21 yrs old, would have been harder. [There are great] players [at Chelsea]. Once they qualified for Champs League, I didn't hesitate. Helps that lots of Francophones are there.
Apparently the advanced talks with Manchester City and United only really began in earnest once the Blues were looking in serious threat of not qualifying for the Champions League next season. But once they won in Munich, Stamford Bridge became the obvious destination. It wasn't an interview of a man who wants to stay around forever and become a Chelsea legend - he is clearly (quite sensibly, in my opinion) doing this to further his own career.
I wouldn't expect a new signing to have any real connection to the team yet, although I'm sure some will complain that he's being too mercenary or whatever. At any rate, I'm glad that any ambiguity around Hazard's final landing place has been cleared up - he's coming to Chelsea. All is well.