Manchester United legend Nemanja Vidic has dismissed claims that Chelsea talisman Eden Hazard is in the same league as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Blues winger has enjoyed a tremendous start to the season, leading some people to question whether he is now at the level of the game’s best players.
Vidic disagrees, however: “I think he’s up there but I think he still has to be a bit more if he wants to be the same as Ronaldo and Messi,” he told beIN SPORTS.
“I think, first of all, I would like to see him compete for the Champions League, and if they win the Champions League then you can put his name as one of the best. Because, if you look at the names who won the Balon d’Or, they’re the players who won the Champions League. He’s there, but he has to be more.”
— beIN SPORTS (@beINSPORTS) November 11, 2018
This is a pretty fair assessment of the state of play for Hazard at the moment. He is not quite at the top table of world football, with Messi and Ronaldo, but he is in the tier just below. He is at the level of players like Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Mohamed Salah and Antoine Griezmann, but not quite up there with the big two as of yet. Whether winning the Champions League is something that, in and of itself, takes him to that next level is a matter of perspective, but it certainly wouldn’t harm his chances. Obviously that’s not going to be able to happen for him with Chelsea this campaign, but if he gets his long-mooted move to Real Madrid then it would become a distinct possibility. Hazard is a wonderful player, probably the best in the Premier League, but every footballer on the planet has a long way to go until they are at the level of Messi and Ronaldo.