Barcelona have reportedly made contacts with Eden Hazard’s representatives after rumours suggesting the Belgian wants to leave Chelsea this summer.
According to sources in Spain, Hazard is Barca’s main attacking target after they missed out on Antoine Griezmann, and he is interested in the prospect of making the switch to the Camp Nou.
The Blaugrana have the money to pay Hazard’s transfer fee and his wages, with Paulinho’s recent return Guangzhou Evergrande expected to boost the club’s coffers significantly if the transfer is made permanent.
Genuine progress on a deal to sign Hazard, 27, is unlikely to occur until Belgium finish their 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign—they still have a third-place play-off against England on Saturday.
Chelsea’s managerial situation is another factor that might delay a possible move as the Blues will needs to resolve the Antonio Conte-Sarri dilemma before his sale could be sanctioned.
The Blues would be loath to let Hazard go, as he has arguably been their most vital player over the past few seasons.
However, given his calibre, Hazard may well be eager to make a move to a UEFA Champions League club that is likely to win major silverware.
La Liga champions Barcelona fit that bill perfectly. Chelsea do not.
They finished fifth in the Premier League last term, 30 points behind champions Manchester City, meaning they will play in the UEFA Europa League next season.
However, one of the main obstacles to signing Hazard this summer could be competition from Real Madrid, who need to make a marquee signing after selling Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus.