Chelsea star and Belgium captain Eden Hazard does not think he is worthy enough to be compared to Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi.
The attacking midfielder has produced some top of the drawer performances this season, as Chelsea sit seven points clear of Tottenham.
Hazard’s performances has led to some sections of the media comparing him to Messi, but the 26-year-old doesn’t think he’s at that level.
“For me, the real artists are [Zinedine] Zidane and Ronaldinho.
[Juan Roman] Riquelme as well for the way he moves and passes the ball,” Hazard told France Football.
“And then there is Messi.
What he does with the ball is something else.
I do not see myself at that level.
It is up to others to make such comments.
I am not going to proclaim myself an artist like him.
“I just want to bring happiness to the fans. The people who come to the stadium want to enjoy themselves and see a spectacle.
It is up to us, the players, to make them happy.
“I have been a creative player ever since I was a child.
You cannot practice it.
Of course, I have worked hard to get where I am, but it is a skill I have that I have improved.
It is natural to me. But you have to do it at the right time.
“The ball is my friend.
We go way back.
He is my most faithful friend. I caress the ball, but that is not always easy when I dribble.
I can caress it when I shoot, like Thierry Henry.
I can treat the ball like a woman, like a friend, like an elderly person.”