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Chelsea 'legend' Hazard cannot be replaced at Stamford Bridge - Drogba

17:13 BST 22/06/2019
Hazard - cropped
The former Blues striker concedes his old teammate will be hugely missed at Stamford Bridge

Eden Hazard will be considered a legend at Chelsea, who will find it impossible to directly replace the Belgian, according to former Blues striker Didier Drogba.

Hazard left Chelsea earlier this month, making a long-awaited move to La Liga giants Real Madrid in a deal that could rise to €140million (£125m/$160m).

The 28-year-old departed Stamford Bridge having scored 21 goals across all competitions last season, helping Chelsea to a third-placed Premier League finish and the Europa League title.

In total he scored 110 goals in 352 appearances, winning two Premier League titles, one FA Cup, one EFL Cup and two Europa League titles.

However, Hazard's departure has come at a difficult time for the Blues, who are currently appealing a transfer ban which would prohibit them from signing players for the next two windows.

Christian Pulisic was brought in from Borussia Dortmund in January before being loaned back to the Bundesliga side for the remainder of the campaign. He returns to the club this summer and will likely take up Hazard's spot in the starting XI.

And though insisting Hazard is irreplaceable, Drogba believes Chelsea will eventually find a way to adapt to life without their star man, who had been at the club since joining from Lille in 2012.

"No one can replace Hazard, he is special," Drogba said during an Instagram Live on his official account on Saturday.

"But someone else will come, [and] step up. Hazard is a legend at Chelsea. That's life, that's football."

Chelsea are currently without a manager after Maurizio Sarri left to join Juventus just 12 months after joining the club from Napoli.

Blues icon Frank Lampard is reportedly the front-runner for the job, following an impressive season at the helm of Derby County, with reports Chelsea are preparing an approach for their former midfielder imminently.

Drogba, who made 381 appearances for Chelsea over two spells, has backed his former team-mate as the best candidate.

"Well, the one who is in line to get the job, I think Lampard," Drogba added when asked for his thoughts on who should take over at Stamford Bridge.