Eden Hazard is Chelsea’s Lionel Messi, claims Branislav Ivanovic

Eden Hazard is being compared to Lionel Messi on a weekly basis.

Hazard has enjoyed an incredible season in West London, displaying his incredible talent on the ball as an attacking threat in Jose Mourinho’s side.

While the Belgian international is not scoring as many goals as his Chelsea counterparts, he has been a vital part of the side who have yet to lose a game this season, and he still has four strikes and one assist to his name in 13 Premier League fixtures.

His match winning output can still improve, but the performances being put in by the 23-year-old are wowing audiences with every passing week. He is undoubtedly already being considered as a potential candidate to be named Premier League Player of the Year - having won Young Player of the Year last term - and he was on the original long-list for the 2014 Ballon d’Or.

However, his biggest praise has been from members of his own team, with Cesc Fabregas likening him to Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi earlier this season. Three-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi - who is once again on the three-man shortlist this year - has been at the top of his game for a much longer timespan than Hazard, but Fabregas compared their ability to ‘make the difference’ when talking to the Mirror at the beginning of October.

This comparison has not been overlooked by further members of the Chelsea team, with Branislav Ivanovic likening the pair in an interview with FourFourTwo.

“Hazard is a quality player and he has the qualities to play even better,” the Serbian international said.

“It’s hard to say how close he is to Messi, when we know about all the records of Messi, but for us at Chelsea he is like Messi for Barcelona.”

It is promising that Ivanovic believes Hazard has the ‘qualities to play even better’ than his current level, with the 30-year-old full-back surely believing that his Stamford Bridge compatriot could claim the Ballon d’Or for a number of years in the future.

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