Eden Hazard has praised new Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri but admits the Italian’s ability will only be truly tested when the club go through a bad run of form.
Sarri has made an impressive start to life at Stamford Bridge since replacing Antonio Conte in July. The Blues are currently third in the Premier League having won their opening five matches before Sunday’s goalless draw at West Ham.
Hazard in particular has thrived in the early weeks of Sarri’s reign, scoring five goals and registering two assists in six Premier League appearances so far.
It represents a dramatic change in fortune for the Belgium international, who was linked with a move to Real Madrid over the summer. The 27-year-old, who has two years remaining on his contract, had reportedly grown frustrated with life under Sarri’s predecessor Conte and was ready to leave had the Italian remained at the club.
However, Sarri’s arrival looks to have changed things with Hazard spearheading Chelsea’s fine start to the season. When asked whether he was enjoying life under the former Napoli coach, Hazard told Sky Sports : “Of course.
"We try to keep the ball. When you are an offensive player you just want to keep the ball.
"We create a lot of passes and chances. We had a bit of trouble [against West Ham] but I think the beginning of the season was great.
"He is a great manager, but it's easy to say when you are winning games. We will see in a bad moment. For sure he is a great manager, and he showed that to the world."
Hazard's team-mate N'Golo Kante is also feeling positive about Chelsea’s prospects under Sarri. The France international believes he is adapting well having been deployed in a more attacking position on the right side of midfield.
"I am enjoying the role," said Kante. "It is a new challenge for me.
"I try to understand the move and the right players' combinations.
"I think we are doing well. We need to keep working and keep improving and I think we can enjoy a good season together."