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REAL MADRID

Hazard staying focused on Chelsea amid continued Real Madrid speculation

Hazard staying focused on Chelsea amid continued Real Madrid speculation

Getty Images

Reports suggest Real Madrid are closing in on a deal for Eden Hazard but the Chelsea forward would not be drawn on the latest rumours.

Eden Hazard says his focus will be on Chelsea for the rest of the season despite reports he is close to agreeing a deal to join Real Madrid. Hazard scored a wonderful solo goal as part of a brace in Chelsea's 2-0 Premier League win over West Ham on Monday, after which Maurizio Sarri told Sky Sports £100million would be "too cheap" to buy the forward.

Chelsea's Eden Hazard celebrates his strike against West Ham.

Contract coming to an end

Belgium international Hazard will only have a year remaining on his contract at the end of 2018-19, but Chelsea may not be able to replace him due to a two-window transfer ban, against which the club have appealed. Reports have claimed Madrid and Chelsea are nearing an agreement for Hazard as part of the LaLiga club's expected heavy investment following Zinedine Zidane's return, but he is concentrating only on helping the Blues have a strong finish to the campaign.

"I'm just focused on Chelsea," Hazard told ESPN. "One month to play, top four, try to win the Europa League. For the fans I think the most important thing is when they see me on the pitch they just think that my head is with Chelsea. So, we'll see [about his future] after."

Europe next season

Chelsea moved up to third in the Premier League by beating West Ham, but the race for Champions League qualification promises to be tight with just five points separating the third-place Blues with Manchester United in sixth. Another route into the tournament would be winning the Europa League, with the Blues travelling to Slavia Prague for the first leg of their quarter-final on Thursday. And Hazard said Chelsea are determined to secure their goal of returning to the Champions League after missing out on this season's competition.

"Two years in a row not playing Champions League [football] is hard for the players but also for the club," the Belgian said. "Chelsea has to play in the Champions League every year, but it's hard because we are not the only team that is trying to play in the Champions League. But that's why we are doing everything at the moment to try and stay in the top four."