Hazard advises Belgium teammate De Bruyne to leave Chelsea

Chelsea playmaker Eden Hazard believes his Belgium teammate Kevin De Bruyne has to consider leaving Stamford Bridge in order to safeguard his place at the 2014 World Cup, ESPN has reported.

Whereas Hazard has been a regular under Jose Mourinho, De Bruyne has struggled to maintain a place in the manager’s XI, making only six club appearances so far this season. Hazard, by contrast, has 14 games to his name, scoring six goals in the process.

Hazard has warned De Bruyne that he cannot expect to retain his place at international level if he isn’t playing regularly for his club, suggesting that it is in the 22-year-old’s best interests to look for a move away from west London. “If he does not play, it is better for him to leave,” Hazard told Het Nieuwsblad.

Playing a World Cup after having not played for a year…is very difficult,” Hazard continued. “If we want to get the best from Kevin in the future it is better that he leaves. But he’s a big boy. He must make his own choices.

De Bruyne spent last season on loan at Werder Bremen, having signed for Chelsea in January 2012. He saw out the 2011/12 season with Genk before being sent to the Bundesliga, returning to Chelsea this summer and making his debut on the opening weekend of the season in the 2-0 win over Hull.

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