Hazard vs Ronaldo: Mourinho says Hazard is better - but was he right? by @SegunAke
Jose Mourinho has done it again - this time the outspoken Chelsea coach said that Eden Hazard performed better than the World footballer of the year Cristiano Ronaldo last season.
Eden Hazard is the key man for Chelsea has they went on to win English Premier League last season while Cristiano Ronaldo was unable to win any trophy at Real Madrid last season as the Spanish giant went trophy-less.
The Portugese captain is the current World footballer of the year but Jose Mourinho thinks his play maker is playing better than him.
"Last season, yes [Hazard was better]," Mourinho said. "In spite of the fact that Ronaldo was fantastic. He was fantastic. He scored an incredible number of goals.
"I am not saying he is not fantastic. I am just saying that, in my personal view, every football player in the world should understand that a team has to be in front and no titles."
On comparing the 24-year-old Hazard with Lionel Messi and Ronaldo, Mourinho added: "Obviously it depends on the season they have. They have to win some titles, no? Football without titles is nothing. Messi won the treble.
"He won three competitions last year, he reached the Copa America final. He had a fantastic season for him and for his team. I don't like players or managers to win individual trophies without the team."
Okay, that's Jose Mourinho's opinion.
Let's take a look at some individual stats comparison of both players from last season courtesy Opta stats.
Last season the Real Madrid star scored an amzing 48 goals in just 35 La Liga matches compared to Hazards 14 league goals in 38 matches for Chelsea.
However, the Belgian star had a better shot conversion rate than Ronaldo with a total of 56 shots making his percentage 25% (Meaning he found the net once in every four attempts) while Ronaldo had a total of 182 shots at 26.37% shot conversion rate.
Hazard registered just 9 assists, while Ronaldo had 16. Well, maybe Hazard's teammates should be blamed for the low number of assists as he created 101 chances for them while Cristiano only created 75 chances for his teammates at Real Madrid.
Cristiano Ronaldo attempted 1181 passes with a pass accuracy of 80.69% while Eden Hazard had the better passing accuracy with 86.92% attempting 2,217 passes.
When it comes to dribbling, no one comes close to the Chelsea star - Hazard completed 180 of 294 attempted dribbles in a very physical league like the EPL while Cristiano Ronaldo was only successful 54 times out of 129 attempts.
Obviously, Hazard will be fouled more times due to the physical nature of the EPL - the PFA player of the year was fouled 113 times while Cristiano suffered 57 times.
With the above stats analysis, who do you think had a better season?
We all know Jose Mourinho is outspoken and this is not the first time he is praising one of his players publicly, he did it with Frank Lampard and it worked as the England midfielder went on to be one of the best midfielders of his time.
Hazard is on the verge of been a great too... But it is hard to compare him to Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo who are 'football gods' according to some fans.
Eden Hazard needs to be more ruthless and selfish if he wants to challenge Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for the Ballon d'or.
At the end of last season, Manchester United legend Paul scholes spoke about Eden Hazard saying 'in this modern age, if he (Hazard) wishes to challenge the achievements of Messi and Ronaldo then he will have to prove that he can match their relentless desire to score goals.
The former England midfielder was right as Hazard seems to be an all round nice guy even on the football pitch.
Jose Mourinho have said this a few times and talked about this last year also, Hazard's father contacted the Portuguese coach to talk to him concerning his son's development.
Mourinho said: “I had a conversation with his father. His father told me something that I loved. I don’t think it’s a problem to tell you. He said – ‘I have a wonderful son. He is a wonderful father. He is a wonderful husband. I want him to change, because I want him to be a wonderful player. But I don’t want him to change a lot. I don’t want him to become – and he used the name of two or three players. I just want him to be the same husband, the same father, the same son, with a little but more tenacity, mental aggression, ambition, personal ego. A little bit more. And you are the guy to give it to him.’
“We can never transform these fantastic players and men into a competitive animal, a competitive machine. Not even his father wants [that]. We have just to bring him to a different level, working hard in training, which he’s doing.”
Watching Eden's interview and behind the scene videos, you would notice he likes goofing around which is rare in great sportsmen, arrogance is key to be a great sportsman. The likes of Usain Bolt, Floyd Mayweather, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo etc are arrogant in their own way when they are playing their respective sports.
Not saying Eden should become a beast but he needs to find the balance of been that wonderful man and father as well as been the most Hazardous player on the football pitch. Hazard needs to leave all that nice guy mentality off the pitch.
He has the talent to be one of the greatest, if he works hard in training and improve on his abilities.
The new season will be decisive for the Belgian star, either he stays on the level he is or move higher and achieve greatness.
And Yes, Jose Mourinho is right to compare him to Cristiano Ronaldo.
After all, he is the best player in the English Premier League and comparing him to the world footballer of the year will only motivate him for greatness which will result in a great season for Chelsea.
Written by @SegunAke