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Trent Alexander-Arnold names Chelsea icon as toughest-ever Premier League opponent

Eden Hazard

Chelsea winger the toughest opponent Alexander-Arnold ever faced

Liverpool‘s star right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold has squared off against the best that football has had to offer on his way to becoming arguably one of the best in his position in all of Europe, but according to the Reds stalwart, it is former Chelsea icon Eden Hazard that gave him the most trouble when the mercurial Belgian was plying his trade at Stamford Bridge.

Alexander-Arnold and Hazard locked horns for three seasons from 2016-17 until 2018-19 before the LOSC Lille academy graduate swapped capitals and moved to Real Madrid in the summer of 2019.

Hazard was at the peak of his powers in 2018-19 before his move to the Santiago Bernabeu, icing 16-goals and adding 15-assists in 37-appearances for the Blues; the fifth season out of a possible seven that the 114-times capped Belgian had eclipsed the 12-goal mark for Chelsea.

At that point in his career, Hazard was a near-perfect blend of technical quality and tactical effectiveness as he terrorized all that challenged his supremacy. The two-times Premier League winner also helped the club bag a pair of Europa League wins, and certainly will go down as one of the most lethal goal-scoring wingers in Premier League history.

A career in decline

Despite the sheer dominance Eden Hazard put on display week in week out during his time at Chelsea, things have not gone according to plan for the golden winger since his move to Real Madrid two seasons ago.

In a storyline that is far from uncommon, his period at a club with even greater expectations than the Blues has resulted in just 5-goals and 7-assists in 47-appearances for Los Blancos. Hardly the return the Spanish giants were hoping for when they shelled out a cool ~£100million to acquire his services.

Trent Alexander-Arnold names Chelsea icon as toughest-ever Premier League opponent

VALENCIA, SPAIN – FEBRUARY 22: Eden Hazard of Real Madrid reacts during the Liga match between Levante UD and Real Madrid CF at Ciutat de Valencia on February 22, 2020 in Valencia, Spain. (Photo by Pablo Morano/MB Media/Getty Images)

Hazard did produce some throwback moments of grace this past summer at Euro2020 for Belgium for Roberto Martinez’s Red Devil’s, but at club level, the son of La Louvière is very much a shadow of himself.

Not all periods of dominance last forever – just ask the Romans – but if Trent Alexander-Arnold’s praise is anything to go by, the effect that Eden Hazard had on the Premier League during his brilliant spell at Chelsea will hardly be forgotten.

This article was edited by Ben Browning.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Chelsea FC 9 20 22
2 Liverpool FC 9 21 21
3 Manchester City 9 16 20
4 West Ham United 9 6 17
5 Brighton & Hove Albion 9 0 15
6 Tottenham Hotspur 9 -4 15
7 Manchester United 9 1 14
8 Everton FC 9 1 14
9 Leicester City 9 0 14
10 Arsenal FC 9 -3 14
11 Wolverhampton Wanderers 9 0 13
12 Brentford FC 9 2 12
13 Aston Villa 9 -2 10
14 Watford FC 9 -5 10
15 Crystal Palace 9 -3 9
16 Southampton FC 9 -4 8
17 Leeds United 9 -8 7
18 Burnley FC 9 -8 4
19 Newcastle United 9 -9 4
20 Norwich City 9 -21 2

Premier League 21/22

Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 7
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 6
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 5
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 4
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 4
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 4
Firmino, Roberto Liverpool FC 4
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 4
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United 4
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 4
Hwang, Hee-chan Wolverhampton Wanderers 4
Sarr, Ismaila Watford FC 4
Greenwood, Mason Manchester United 4
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 3
Townsend, Andros Everton FC 3
King, Joshua Watford FC 3
Ings, Danny Aston Villa 3
Benrahma, Said West Ham United 3
Gray, Demarai Everton FC 3