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Hazard swayed by Champions League berth

25 September 2012 10:13

Eden Hazard say Tottenham's failure to qualify for the Champions League was ultimately what caused him to change course for Stamford Bridge.

The Belgian star was the subject of a lengthy transfer saga in the close-season, with both Manchester United and Manchester City close to his signature before his 32 million pound move to Chelsea.

Spurs had made Hazard a top target and had been pursuing him during the second half of 2011/12 before their final league position became a deal-breaker for the ex-Lille man.

"It's true that Tottenham tempted me because it was a young team which was third in the league," Hazard told France Football.

"Unfortunately, the end of the season did not go well. They did not reach the Champions League, which tipped the balance."

Hazard confessed he had demanded assurances from the club's directors that their playing style would be changed before signing.

"Nobody was really a fan of Chelsea's game last season," he said.

"The directors told me they were going to recruit good players with whom I could play decent football. Marko Marin, Oscar and me, we like to have the ball at our feet.

"Juan Mata likes the ball, so does Ramires. The title of European champions, and Champions League qualification, counted for a lot because the club was not doing well in the league. Once Chelsea won the final, it was a natural choice.

"Chelsea really wanted me to come - this is the right choice for now.

"There is competition in the team, but in the big clubs, it's the case every week. You can have a good game and find yourself on the bench next time."

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