Belgium manager Roberto Martinez has claimed that Chelsea star Eden Hazard is the most decisive player in the world after Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Hazard has enjoyed an outstanding last six months, helping Martinez's Red Devils to finish third at the World Cup in Russia with a series of sublime individual displays as the team's captain.
His form has faded a little since an irresistible start having only scored once in his last nine league matches, but he was debatably the best player in world football a few months ago.
Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri challenged Hazard to score 40 goals and win the Premier League Golden Boot this season while Cesar Azpilicueta declared: “Messi, Cristiano, they score 50 goals a year and that is very difficult in England.”
Martinez believes that Real Madrid-linked Hazard – who has won everything but the Champions League with Chelsea – has never been in better form in his career.
Martinez told The Times: “At international level, I have only seen a player playing at the very top consistently.
“If you take Ronaldo and Messi away, I don't think you can find another player as decisive.
“He's carrying Chelsea. [Kevin] De Bruyne, [Raheem] Sterling et al aren't carrying their team but Hazard can. That first few months of the season, you could argue that he was the best player in world football.”
This article was most recently revised and updated 4 years ago