Five options for Eden Hazard after turning down chance to join Lionel Messi

The forgotten Belgian superstar still has time on his side, but his stock has taken a hit after four disappointing seasons at Real Madrid

Eden Hazard’s career appears to be at a crossroads following his departure from Real Madrid as he rejects a chance to join Inter Miami. (Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Former Chelsea star Eden Hazard is at a crossroads in his career after Real Madrid ripped up his contract after four underwhelming years.

The Belgian’s blockbuster move to the Bernabeu should have seen the diminutive striker’s stardom explode to stratospheric new heights, but a lack of form and fitness ruined his spell in Spain. In the end, it came as no great shock that manager Carlo Ancelotti decided to show him the door at the end of last season.

The one-off success for the PFA Players’ Player of the Year in England was a stark contrast to how he fared following his move to Los Blancos, where the 126-capped international had made just 76 appearances, a disappointing seven strikes over four seasons. In his last year in West London alone, he scored 21 goals in 52 games.

Although he picked up two league winners’ medals and was instrumental in Madrid’s Champions League triumph in 2022, his influence was minimal in those performances. Now aged 32, there have been many suggestions that Hazard could hang up his boots after his games in the Spanish capital.

Eden Hazard has parted ways with Carlo Ancelotti and Real Madrid after four disappointing seasons in the Spanish capital (Photo: Antonio Villalba/Real Madrid via Getty Images)(Antonio Villalba/Real Madrid via Getty Images)

That said, the former Stamford Bridge fan favorite looks set to remain defiant and told RTBF that he would be keen to try and rebuild his career with a new club next season. He may have endured a difficult spell with the 14-time European champions, but he still apparently feels he has something to offer.

He said: “After three complicated years, I just want to spend time with my family, go on vacation, like everyone else. We’ve read a lot of things in the last few days, and a lot of nonsense. I don’t know, we’ll see… I still feel capable of being a professional footballer, but at the same time, I’ve rested for two or three years. I still have some energy!”

Here we assess the possible options for the forgotten superstar as we head into the new season…

1. Return to Belgium

It may come as a surprise to some to learn that Belgian giants Anderlecht finished a lowly 11th in the Pro League, meaning they missed out on a place in the play-offs. The Brussels-based club have already added Danish star Kasper Dolberg to their squad this summer as they look to get back to winning ways next term. Anderlecht sporting director Jesper Fredberg addressed the possibility of a switch for Hazard in an interview with The newspaper. However, he rejected any suggestion that they would make a move for the former Lille star, so it appears the latter is dead in the water.

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