Real Madrid have signalled their interest to secure the £100 million summer signing of Chelsea star Eden Hazard, according to reports.
Their interest in the Belgium international represents the first proper contact ahead of a possible summer transfer.
The appointment of Hazard’s idol Zinedine Zidane as Santiago Solari’s replacement at Real Madrid could prove decisive in making up his mind.
Hazard has already described a move to Real as a “dream”, with Madrid having frequently been linked with the Belgian over the last couple of years.
Chelsea are asking for around £100m from Real Madrid, who are aiming to get the asking price down.
Madrid are keen to maintain a good relationship with the club in the negotiations, as they did in the process of securing the signing of Thibaut Courtois in 2018.
Hazard is in a strong bargaining position over his future at Stamford Bridge as his Chelsea deal enters the last year.
Chelsea have fought hard to keep their star man and had hoped to renew his deal – making him the club’s highest-earning player in an attempt to ensure he finished his career at the club.
As well as Hazard, there are also doubts over the future of Callum Hudson-Odoi, who was approached by Bayern Munich in January but was blocked from making the transfer to Germany.
He will also be entering the final year of his deal in summer 2019 and will likely be considering his future as regular first-team opportunities in the Premier League under Maurizio Sarri continue to be difficult to come by.
The Blues will also be affected by the transfer ban that has been handed to them by FIFA, which is set to begin in the summer.