Chelsea midfielder Eden Hazard has revealed he would prefer to play in the No. 10 role at Stamford Bridge. The 25-year-old Belgian has been deployed on the left-hand side of Chelsea's attack since the arrival of new boss Antonio Conte – but Hazard admitted it is not where he really wants to play.
The Premier League-winning star explained he enjoys more freedom when playing in the No. 10 role for his country, and would like to be afforded that the same opportunity at club level. However, he acknowledged that it is Conte's responsibility to organise the Chelsea team.
"I like to play as a No. 10," the Chelsea midfielder explained, according to ESPN. "I think I have more freedom offensively. For Belgium, we have full-backs who run hard and create a lot of space, which is good and I like to play there.
"I don't know if I will play there at Chelsea. You need to ask the manager! I play on the left hand side and I try to do the best I can."
So far this season, Chelsea have tested Oscar, Cesc Fabregas and Willian in the No. 10 role. But Hazard does not see himself being given the same chance in the near future.
"It's true I like to play as a 10. Sometimes at Chelsea we don't play with system with a No. 10, too," he said. "I don't think Chelsea wants to change just for me [to play] as a 10. I did well in the past as a left winger and for now, I am trying to get back to that best again."
Despite this, Hazard has praised Conte for ensuring that the Chelsea squad was in tip-top physical condition going into the current season, especially after the Blues started the last campaign in such sluggish fashion. "We are fit because we ran a lot in preseason! You need to do this to stay at the top. We want to improve with this manager," he said of the Chelsea manager.
"He is good. We started well with three wins, then we suffered two defeats after the international break and then we won again. He has tried to bring confidence to the players."