Eden Hazard is willing to begin talks with Real Madrid having grown frustrated with his role at Chelsea, the Times have reported.
The Belgian forward is said to be increasingly disappointed by the approach of manager Antonio Conte, who has been criticised for employing negative tactics. And even though Conte is expected to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season and Chelsea are willing to pay Hazard as much as £300,000-a-week to keep him, the Belgian is considering his options.
Hazard did little to hide his discontent after Sunday's 1-0 defeat against Manchester City, in which Chelsea opted to defend deep and posed almost no offensive threat.
“When you leave the pitch you have the impression that you’ve run, but that you haven’t played a game of football,” Hazard, who was utilised as a striker but received very little service, said after the game. “That’s a pity. We could have played on for three hours and I wouldn’t [have been able to] touch a ball.
“I tried to jump towards the long balls. I played today against [Nicolás] Otamendi and [Aymeric] Laporte. It’s not easy to win duels against them. We haven’t played with our qualities.
"If Giroud or [Álvaro] Morata had played up front, it would have been easier to play those long balls. With me, it’s a little bit more complicated, but I tried my best.
"When the manager plays me up front, I try to give everything. For me personally it is difficult to play a good game when you only touch the ball three times. I think that, when we had the ball, we should have done better.”
The 27-year-old is stalling over a new contract and is expected to consider his options at the end of the season.
Hazard is believed to be interested in a move to Real Madrid, although it remains to be seen if an offer will be made.