Eden Hazard misses Chelsea’s PAOK trip after complaining of tiredness

Kristopher Nichols
September 20, 2018

Maurizio Sarri is set to make use of the squad depth he has available to him in Europe and has identified the game as the ideal chance to rest Hazard.

The Merseyside club won the last of their then-record 18 English titles in 1990 - before the Premier League was formed - but optimism is growing after a statement 2-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur kept them on maximum points.

Hazard prepared for the Cardiff game with some encouragement and advice from Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri on Friday. And so I thought it was better for him to have training and rest. "But spend less energy far from the goal and play in the last 25 metres".

However, even United are trailing when compared to Manchester rivals City who have spent almost €1bn on their star-studded squad.

The Red Devils suffered back-to-back defeats against Brighton and Tottenham last month as the Old Trafford club experienced their worst start to a league season in 26 years.

"In the first part of the season it's very important to play possibly with the same players".

He said: "There is always room for improvement".

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The Portuguese had to wait for his time to shine during City's record-breaking campaign last season, but is now Guardiola's main man in midfield with Kevin De Bruyne sidelined by a long-term knee injury. Romelu Lukaku and Chris Smalling both scored inside three minutes in the first half but United had to withstand a second-half fightback that saw Andre Gray left unmarked to reduce the deficit.

He singled out Marouane Fellaini and Romelu Lukaku for praise and even spoke warmly of the match officials when asked about the late sending-off of Nemanja Matic. But I don't know if there is a spot for him tomorrow.

Chelsea are trading at [1.86] in the Match Odds market, and while they have made an excellent start to Sarri's first campaign, that seems a bit short to me.

And he drew a laugh when he joked about goal-scorer Chris Smalling's new haircut.

Mourinho led Chelsea FC to the 2014-15 Premier League title and the League Cup before the Portuguese head coach was sacked in December 2015.

Hazard was described as one of the best players in Europe by Sarri after his display against Cardiff but is to be rested for this weekend's Premier League game against West Ham. The last time Chelsea failed to escape the group stage of either the UCL or UEL was back in 2013, when their defence of the Champions League trophy lasted just six games.

Fellaini recovered possession for United more often than any other player (10 times), while also winning seven of his nine aerial duels, and providing the assist for Chris Smalling's goal - not bad. "I am convinced and the players are convinced".

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