Eden Hazard says he never considered joining Paris Saint-Germain, despite the Ligue 1 giants repeatedly trying to sign him while he was at Chelsea.
The 28-year-old Belgium international was frequently targeted by the French champions during his seven-year spell in the Premier League but says his loyalties – as far as French football is concerned – will always be to former club Lille.
Hazard joined Lille as a teenager and went on to make close to 200 appearances for the club in all competitions, winning a league and cup double with them in 2010-11 before leaving for Chelsea a year later.
“They [PSG] often wanted to recruit me,” Hazard revealed to L'Equipe.
“I did not want to go back to Ligue 1, and not to another club other than Lille. I always told them no.
“In my head, it was clear. They are a club that could help me win the Champions League. But it was not in my plans. If I ever come back to Ligue 1, it will be with Lille.”
Hazard established himself as a modern club legend during his seven years at Chelsea, but eventually departed this summer to join Real Madrid.
A hamstring injury picked up in pre-season initially curtailed his start to life in La Liga, but in recent matches he has shown signs that he is nearing his best form.
He put in a devastating display in Madrid’s last game before the international break, a 4-0 win away to Eibar. The match could be seen as a sign of progress under Zinedine Zidane, with Madrid having lost 3-0 there almost exactly a year prior, during their disastrous 2018-19 campaign.
Now, they are level on points with Barcelona at the top of the Spanish tree and will hope to overtake them in the coming weeks with Ernesto Valverde’s side struggling to produce good team performances.
Madrid face Real Sociedad and Deportivo Alaves either side of a mouth-watering Champions League clash at home to PSG, with the first Clasico of the season looming before Christmas.
Hazard will be hoping to perform against PSG having struggled to make an impact in Madrid’s 3-0 defeat in Paris earlier in the season, while their opponents are set to be boosted by the return from injury of star man Neymar.