Search icon


05th Feb 2017

Eden Hazard is now comparable to Lionel Messi – according to Roberto Martínez

Roberto Martínez at it again.

Mike Wright

Roberto Martínez has form for ludicrous hyperbole when it comes to players he manages.

Remember when he described Tom Cleverly as the best English player around? Yeah, that Tom Cleverly. The one who’s just been shipped off to Watford after being deemed surplus to requirement at Everton. After being deemed surplus to requirement at Manchester United.

Now talking up your players to help build their confidence is not the worst managerial strategy. But Martínez can take it to outlandish proportions.

And when he appeared on Goals on Sunday this morning, the Catalan was given another prime opportunity to indulge his penchant.

Eden Hazard in action for Belgium during the international friendly against the Netherlands (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)


When asked about Eden Hazard, who Martinez manages for Belgium, he said:

“What he does is quite unique It’s that acceleration and stopping and standing still. He reminds me a lot of Messi. Not many players can control the moment and take the defenders where you want to take them.

“The way he uses the ball with his feet is sensational and what is surprising more than anything is his maturity. I think that Eden, at 26, is almost in the perfect moment of his career and the system that Chelsea plays, which is the same as we play in the national team, has really given him a new breath of life.”

Comparing Hazard to Messi may not be on par with the Tom Cleverly lunacy – the Belgian did put in one of his best performances against Arsenal yesterday, especially with his stunning solo effort for Chelsea’s second.

His scintillating form has also been instrumental in Chelsea acquiring such a commanding lead at the top of the table.

But it’s probably a wee bit early to start comparing him to four-time Ballon D’Or-winning Lionel Messi, eh Roberto?


Catch up with this week’s episode of 888sport Football Friday Live