MX23RW : Wednesday, October 17 08:08:49

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

Hazard: 'Barkley can be one of the best'
© Reuters
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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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City86202131820
2Chelsea86201851320
3Liverpool86201531220
4Arsenal86021910918
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs8602157818
6Bournemouth85121612416
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves843196315
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd84131314-113
9Watford84131112-113
10Leicester CityLeicester84041412212
11Everton83321312112
12Burnley82241012-28
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton8224913-48
14Crystal Palace821559-47
15West Ham UnitedWest Ham8215813-57
16Southampton8125614-85
17Fulham8125921-125
18Huddersfield TownHuddersfield8035417-133
19Newcastle UnitedNewcastle8026613-72
20Cardiff CityCardiff8026417-132

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