Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink believes it’s essential that Chelsea secure Champions League football for next season if they are to retain Eden Hazard.
The 28-year-old winger continues to be strongly linked with a transfer to Real Madrid and has been very open towards the idea of making a “dream” move to the Santiago Bernabeu.
Not helping matters is Hazard’s refusal to discuss a new contract at Chelsea with his existing deal set to expire in June 2020.
And the alarms bells are well and truly ringing now at Stamford Bridge following FIFA’s decision to impose a two-transfer window ban on Chelsea due to breaking regulations in regards to signing minors.
Therefore, the need to keep Hazard is now greater than ever for Chelsea if they are to overcome these difficult circumstances.
The Belgium captain has recently indicated he’s made a decision over his future, but hasn’t informed Blues boss Maurizio Sarri of his choice.
However, Hasselbaink thinks the best solution for Chelsea to convince their star player to remain with them is to secure a return to the Champions League for next season.
Sarri’s side currently find themselves down in sixth-place in the Premier League and need to finish at least two places higher to qualify for Europe’s top club competition.
Although winning the Europa League this season would also suffice in reaching their main objective.
“It’ll be difficult for Hazard if Chelsea aren’t in the Champions League next season,” Ex-Blues striker Hasselbaink told the Daily Mirror.
That’s why the game with Tottenham is every bit as vital as the Carabao Cup final, maybe even more.
“But sooner or later I think the club will have to shuffle things around anyway to provide a pathway for young players like Callum Hudson-Odoi.
“They have some great young players coming through but if they can’t get into the first team they will go to clubs like Manchester United, Liverpool and Spurs who give them a chance.”
Hazard has managed 15 goals and 10 assists in 34 appearances across all competitions for Chelsea this season.
The Belgian superstar will likely start in today’s Carabo Cup final against Manchester City with kick-off set for 5:30 PM (CET) at Wembley.
A crucial goal from @HazardEden10 helped send us to Wembley today!
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 24, 2019