Eden Hazard has been urged to follow his dream by quitting Chelsea for Real Madrid.
The Belgium superstar winger sparked a big-money tug-of-war over the weekend after admitting he is ready to snub a £300,000-a-week new deal and leave Stamford Bridge this summer.
Roberto Martinez, his national team coach who has spent the past six weeks with Hazard, believes he should go, with Madrid a long-time admirer and keen to replace Cristiano Ronaldo following his move to Juventus.
Martinez said: “Players need new challenges and new projects. Perhaps it’s a good time for [Chelsea] and for Eden [to split]. I would be very surprised if Chelsea didn’t have big offers for him right now.”
The FA Cup holders are confident neither Real nor Barcelona would be able to match their £200million valuation of their prize asset, who has just two years left on his contract.
But Martinez told Cadena Ser’s ‘El Larguero’ radio show: “It could be the best time [for Hazard] to try something different.
“He is a player who has maturity and a lot of leadership. His play is based on talent.
“Hazard could carry a new project anywhere in the world. He is at the best moment of his career. He could fit in any team in the world.”
Although new Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri wants his own players in, he agrees with the club that Hazard remains a player around whom the team should be rebuilt.
With just three weeks left of the transfer window before the season starts, the Blues are unwilling to countenance losing the schemer who had an impressive World Cup.