Eden Hazard Transfer Rumours: What Manchester City Need to Know About Lille Star

Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentMay 15, 2012

Eden Hazard Transfer Rumours: What Manchester City Need to Know About Lille Star

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    Lille star Eden Hazard revealed that he'll be calling Manchester home; now the question is: which Manchester club? 

    I'm pretty certain it's Manchester City because he's the type of person to chase the money, plus he wants to win right now. 

    Here's what City supporters need to know about Hazard.

1. Eden Hazard Will Be Manchester City's Best Dribbler

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    League Only Eden Hazard Sergio Agüero Yaya Touré  David Silva Samir Nasri
    Completed Dribbles 88 56 37 38 25
    Dribbles Per Game 2.4 1.6 1.2 1.1 0.8

    The way Eden Hazard manoeuvres his way past several opposing players is a sight to behold. 

    That being said, like most talented dribblers, he has a habit of running into sticky situations. 

    But Manchester City need someone explosive, someone with no fear, someone willing to run at opposing defenders instead of playing it safe. (I'm looking at you, Samir Nasri.)

2. Eden Hazard Can Beat Teams with His Passing

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    Eden Hazard's playmaking ability is underrated. 

    In a 4-0 win over Valenciennes, he created six shots, two of which led to goals. 

    Yes, he is an elusive dribbler, but he consistently puts opposing teams in a world of hurt with his incisive passing. 

    League Only Eden Hazard Sergio Agüero Yaya Touré  David Silva Samir Nasri
    Assists 16 8 6 15 9
    Shots Created 91 57 54 104 76
    Shots Created Per Game 2.5  1.7 1.7 2.9 2.5
    Pass Completion 81.4% 86.5% 90.5% 87.1% 91.1%

3. Eden Hazard and Tactics

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    When Eden Hazard first broke into Lille's senior squad, he started a few games on the right, opposite Michel Bastos. 

    Even then, you could see glimpses of audacious ability from Hazard. 

    This was during the 2008-09 season where Bastos was on fire, and some had expected him to become a superstar—unfortunately that hasn't been the case. 

    Since then, Hazard has rarely played consecutive games on the right as Rudi Garcia has used the Belgian as a left-sided forward in a 4-3-3. 

    Garcia's bread and butter is the 4-3-3, but he has used the 4-2-3-1 several times, in which Hazard has played as the centre attacking midfielder. 

    Hazard has looked dangerous slicing through the middle. From this position, he has scored four goals and provided five assists in 10 Ligue 1 games. 

    Don't forget, he was inspirational during the 2007 UEFA Under-17 Championship as a centre attacking midfielder in Bob Browaeys' 4-2-3-1. 

    The UEFA Technical Report stated: "No. 10 [Hazard] key figure in attacking play; quality passing and 1v1 skills."

    Throughout Roberto Mancini's managerial career, he has kept it simple with a 4-4-2, rarely venturing into Marcelo Bielsa territory. 

    In an ideal world, Hazard would replace Samir Nasri as the right winger, but there are two issues:

    1. Why play two wide midfielders who aren't real wingers in a 4-4-2? Use a formation like 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 which empowers inside-out wingers and forwards. 

    2. Both David Silva and Hazard are defensive liabilities as wide midfielders in a 4-4-2. 

4. Eden Hazard's Attitude Problems

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    The hardest attribute to judge a player by is his attitude because it's rare for a player's dirty laundry to be made public. 

    But Eden Hazard is an exception, and here's an insightful quote from Belgian assistant manager Marc Wilmots: 

    Eden has everything to get to the top level. I'm not talking about Lille, but the real top level in England or Spain. But to get there, talent alone will not suffice. He can change a match at any moment but in his game there are still moments of absence. That's what he has to work on, his consistency. 

    The French press are sometimes blinded by his moments of magic. What they're saying about Eden today, they were saying a year and a half ago about Gourcuff. Today, with hindsight, can we be sure that they did him (Gourcuff) a favour?

    What many people disregarded about Yoann Gourcuff was his mental weakness—he gives up too easily. 

    Hazard's character issues have been pointed out by Lille manager Rudi Garcia, former Belgian manager Dick Advocaat and current Belgian manager Georges Leekens. 

    In a game against Turkey, Hazard ditched his teammates for the burger stall after being subbed. There's one solid example to back up all the whispers about his attitude issues. 

    That being said, some of the best-ever footballers were high-and-mighty. 

    If Hazard joins Manchester City, and the club recalls John Guidetti and Vladimír Weiss, then Mancini will have three new divas to handle, on top of managing Mario Balotelli, Samir Nasri and Carlos Tévez. 

    With regards to the way Hazard has dealt with the transfer rumours, talk about spreading the love around—only to cause massive heartache to Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur supporters. 

    Two words sum him up: media whore. 

5. Eden Hazard's Problems for the Belgian National Team

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    Judging Eden Hazard's U-17 and U-19 performances for Belgium, one would have naturally assumed he'd make a smooth transition into the senior international team. 

    There are two different Hazards: a world-class talent at Lille and one struggling to cope with international football for Belgium. 

    Obviously, you have to factor in his fractious relationship with manager Georges Leekens, but Hazard came up short against France, Germany, the United States and Turkey last year. 

    Remember this isn't just any Belgian team, this is the Belgian Golden Generation: 

    Simon Mignolet, Thibaut Courtois, Toby Alderweireld, Thomas Vermaelen, Vincent Kompany, Jan Vertonghen, Steven Defour, Marouane Fellaini, Axel Witsel, Moussa Dembélé, Radja Nainggolan, Nacer Chadli, Dries Mertens, Kevin De Bruyne, Kevin Mirallas, Romelu Lukaku and Jelle Vossen. 

    Will the Premier League spotlight be too bright for Hazard? Please comment below. 

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    Please read What the Gunners Need to Know About Jan Vertonghen.

    Statistics courtesy of WhoScored.com