MX23RW : Monday, February 18 02:59:41

Eden Hazard: 'Ross Barkley can be one of the best players in the world'

Hazard: 'Barkley can be one of the best'
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Chelsea winger Eden Hazard backs teammate Ross Barkley to become one of the best players in world football.

Chelsea winger Eden Hazard has said that Ross Barkley has all the attributes to become one of the best players in world football.

Barkley joined Chelsea from Everton in January and went on to make a slow start to his career at Stamford Bridge, but the arrival of manager Maurizio Sarri has seemingly given the midfielder a new lease of life.

The 24-year-old scored his first goal for the club during Sunday's 3-0 win over Southampton, and Hazard believes that he has plenty more to offer too.

"If you give him the freedom to play and the confidence on the pitch, he can be one of the best in the world. He is powerful, can dribble, he is clever, can shoot and score — he has everything," Hazard told the London Evening Standard.

"I think he is a fantastic midfielder and if he has the players around him to help him play, then he can be one of the best. He played a fantastic game at Southampton — and it is not just because he scored and got an assist.

"You can see on the pitch that he is very strong. He had some bad moments last year with injury, but I think he can reach a fantastic level because he is a fantastic player. I remember seeing that when he was at Everton. He is still young and is a good player for the future of Chelsea. His confidence is growing. When you have confidence, you play more often."

Barkley has directly contributed to three goals from his 11 appearances across all competitions this season.


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Chelsea midfielder Ross Barkley celebrates scoring against Southampton on Sunday, October 7, 2018
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