Eden Hazard has refused to commit his future to Chelsea and left the door open to a summer transfer by telling Real Madrid “if they want to buy me, they know what to do”.
The Belgium international, who is currently away on World Cup duty, has long been linked with a big-money move to the Santiago Bernabeu.
Those at Stamford Bridge had been hoping to end the rumours by agreeing fresh terms with their prized asset, but no contract extension has been put in place as the 27-year-old remains evasive on his plans.
Hazard is waiting to see what the summer brings at Chelsea before making a decision on his next move, with uncertainty shrouding the future of manager Antoinio Conte and several senior stars, and that leaves him in a position where he can rule nothing out.
Quizzed again on the Madrid rumours by L’Equipe, the two-time Premier League title winner said: “I do not want to talk about transfer right now. I have been asked so many times about that. I am focused on the World Cup.
“But as I said before, I won everything in London except the Champions League. If I’m here in my career, it’s thanks to Chelsea.
“It would be too easy to say: I want to leave because I have done everything. It is for that before everything that I would really like to know what will happen at the club next year.
“I am waiting to see if the coach stays or leaves.
“If I stay, it will be because the team will be better than the season we have just had. I do not want to stay if we are less good.
“Real Madrid can interest me, everyone knows it.
“But if tomorrow this club does not want me, we will not talk about it anymore.
“If they want to buy me, they know what to do.
“Go there for the sake of it… no. It takes a project. I still have a project in Chelsea. If I have a good World Cup, things will be easier.”
Hazard still has two years left to run on his current contract at Chelsea.
He has been in talks regarding a new deal, but his father revealed back in December that one offer had been shunned as his representatives wait on an approach from Madrid.
Thierry Hazard told Le Soir: “What I can reveal about Eden is that he refused a contract extension.
“This was so that, if necessary, he could follow the interest of the Real, whom he could see himself playing for.”