Martin Keown has heaped praise on Chelsea's Eden Hazard, but claims he will need something spectacular to get the better of Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk when the two sides meet in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.
Since joining Liverpool, van Dijk has helped Liverpool emerge as one of the top teams in the Premier League. The Dutchman has formed an impressive partnership with Joe Gomez this season and has been a huge part of Liverpool's perfect start to the new season.
He writes: There is a zippiness to Eden Hazard which he displayed in scoring Chelsea’s winner the other night.
“He has that change of pace and direction which makes him the best dribbler in the Premier League.
“It’s an art form. We’ve seen Lionel Messi do it over the years and that is why people have started talking about greatness with Hazard.
“Hazard will have more difficulty doing it against Virgil van Dijk, if fit, and Joe Gomez, though."
Keown justified his comments by referencing van Dijk's impressive performance for The Netherlands against France earlier this month.
With Kylian Mbappe running directly at van Dijk, the Dutchman managed to keep up with Mbappe's incredible pace before executing a perfect tackle to dispossess the Frenchman.
He said: "Van Dijk is no slouch — the footage of him keeping up with Kylian Mbappe, then tackling the French star for Holland during the international break proved that.”
Hazard has enjoyed a phenomenal start to the new season under Maurizio Sarri. The 27-year-old has racked up six goals and two assists from seven games this season, including a man-of-the-match performance against Liverpool in the Carabao Cup earlier this week. He will be keen to use that momentum and put in another breathtaking performance this weekend.