Chelsea's Eden Hazard continues to draw comparisons to the likes of Lionel Messi and Zinedine Zidane, but fellow midfielder John Obi Mikel has urged fans to be patient on the team's new arrival.
Hazard joined Chelsea on a transfer worth 32 million pounds from Ligue 1 club Lille, the English club's most expensive signing of the summer so far. Mikel has appreciated what he's seen so far from the 21-year-old attacking midfielder so far but believes Hazard will need time to adjust to the Premier League.
"He's a good player that just needs time to adapt to the English game," Mikel told Goal.com. "The English game is always difficult no matter who you are. It always takes time."
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Hazard scored in his preseason debut for Chelsea against the Seattle Sounders in a 4-2 win. Over the past two years, he has had stellar seasons with Lille, tallying 27 goals and 25 assists in 76 appearances.
In Chelsea's 4-3-3 formation, Hazard will likely play between wing and the striker position. With head coach Roberto Di Mateo hoping to emphasize more on creativity and dribbling isolations, Hazard could replicate his final season in France when he scored 20 goals.
Mikel believes that the Belgium international will be a great fit at Chelsea once he gets comfortable with the team, saying, "He's a great player and he's shown some flashes of what he can do."
"We just have to give him time," Mikel added.
With Chelsea looking to attack more, Mikel admits that he will also have to adapt. Mikel will likely remain as a holding midfielder for Chelsea but he could have more responsibilities if Chelsea sends more players forward. He's ready for the challenge.
"I did it last season [adjusting to a new style] and I've been doing it since I've come here. I just keep on doing what I do," Mikel said.