The best are prepared to fail - Eden Hazard is proof of that

Chelsea play-maker Eden Hazard is regarded as one of Europe's best young players...and here is one of the reasons why.

Much has been written about the positives in Eden Hazard's game.  After all, when you are that good, the negatives rarely get a look in - in part because they are so few and in part because it seems frivolous to focus on them.

But the things the Belgian - or any player for that matter - gets wrong may be just as important as the multitude of things he gets right.  After all, no player is born perfect, and their mistakes are often the making of them.

The best are prepared to fail, not in life but in those moments that make up each and every game.  If they are dispossessed or give the ball away, the best try the same thing again, and again, until it comes off.

They are not disheartened by small failures, nor big ones in truth.  They always think of the "next time".

Hazard has been dispossessed more than any other player in the Premier League this season. And yet it is not because he is a bad player, but because he is always pushing the opposition, always trying something new, always thinking ahead.

When you have such courage in your ability, it is not always going to pay off.  But it will more often than not. 

Eden Hazard Chelsea 65 24 2,015
Youssuf Mulumbu West Brom 56 23 1,939
Adam Lallana Southampton 55 24 1,931
Jay Rodriguez Southampton 50 24 1,848
Peter Crouch Stoke 49 21 1,594

Similarly, the Chelsea player has lost possession of the ball on 406 occasions - the third worst record in that area in the league.  But then Luis Suarez has lost possession 403 times, but what has he done on all the occasions when he has kept it?

That arguably the two best players in England's top flight are among the five worst offenders for losing the ball shows that the top players demand the ball and are always attempting that defence-splitting pass, that moment of magic.  

That is nothing new.  But it does re-emphasis that the likes of Hazard will always persevere; that down-heartedness is not a feeling experienced by football's best.

PlayerTeamPossession LostAppsMins
Ahmed Elmohamady Hull 479 24 2,077
Tom Huddlestone Hull 409 24 2,099
Eden Hazard Chelsea 406 24 2,015
Robert Snodgrass Norwich 405 17 1,447
Luis Suarez Liverpool 403 19 1,708

So while the quality players are prepared to suffer moments of failure, they could just as easily be re-branded moments of experimentation, as they seek to find new ways to change the games they were born to dictate.

image: © Ben Sutherland

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