Eden Hazard relishing Chelsea partnership with Gonzalo Higuain

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When asked about Higuain's claim that Sarri is a father figure, the Chelsea boss replied, via the Daily Mail,: "I hope I am the football father!" He reacts very well to difficulties.

No defensive awareness - now is that down to individual culpability, like Alonso going AWOL at a defensive free-kick, that allows City to score an easy opener, or Sarri's inability to pick players in their right positions, or indeed coach them how to defend?

Hazard, who says it is nice to be able to go to restaurants or the cinema with his wife Natacha and three children and not be approached the whole time, as he is in Belgium, is keen to emphasise his philosophy as a player is dedicated to the overall team performance.

Higuain forged a close bond with Sarri during their historic campaign together at Napoli and subsequently described the Italian as "a bit like a father" to him.

"Sarri is a great manager", said Hazard of the 60-year-old coach. 'I will be really happy with him if he wants to stay, but it's up to him.

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"I hope to recapture my true form with Maurizio Sarri and Chelsea".

Speaking to The Times, Hazard has now hinted that his long-term future could remain with the Blues, given he is content with the progress made under manager Maurizio Sarri. "But Higuain is a fantastic striker". He is someone who helps me, knows my game and how to get the best out of me. He then talked about the expectations on him and said, "I'm not at all selfish".

"As you have seen in the last match, Eden passed the ball very often to Gonzalo, they speak the same language with the ball, and so I think that Gonzalo will be very important for us also for this [reason]", Sarri added. "And so, he has to decide".

City lead the table on goal difference from Liverpool, with both sides 12 points clear of Chelsea entering this weekend's fixtures.

"We are still learning about his concept".