Boss Mourinho hails Chelsea’s ‘magician’

Jose Mourinho compared Eden Hazard to a magician after the Belgian’s match-winning display in the 2-0 victory over Arsenal.

Hazard arguably gave his finest performance of the season, growing in confidence after the 27th-minute penalty he won and scored following a jinking run that took him past three defenders and could easily have led to a red card for Laurent Koscielny.

“In these matches you need one of your top players to take some magic cards out of his pocket,” Mourinho said. “He did it when the game was 0-0, when the game was tight.

“He did an action that could have finished the game. If it was a penalty and red card rather than penalty and yellow card, the game is over. Eden did that for us.

“And on top of that he scored a penalty and he had one or more opportunities.”

Jose Mourinho of Chelsea
Mourinho was delighted with Hazard’s all-round display

Mourinho, who has been quick to criticise Hazard for switching off defensively, was equally thrilled with the player’s work-rate.

“He was very good. In the same way I didn’t like against Aston Villa, today I liked it very, very much,” Mourinho said.

Mourinho was also full of praise for former Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas, who was booed by many Gunners fans.

Fabregas played a key part in the 2-0 victory, impressing throughout and setting up the game-clinching second goal for fellow summer signing Diego Costa.

“He was fantastic,” Mourinho said. “But he is doing this since day one. I don’t remember a game this season where he was not fantastic.

“Fabregas was very special. To play against the team where he was born shows even more his commitment with us – and his professionalism.”