Eden Hazard looked mightily relieved to get off the mark for Chelsea at the weekend but Guus Hiddink doesn’t think his lack of goals has been as big an issue as some people would think.
Hazard was the double footballer of the year last season as he lit up the Premier League with his creativity and finishing to blast the Blue to the title in fine style.
But he has so far failed to reach those heights again this term and only notched his first of the season in Sunday’s FA Cup demolition of Championship strugglers MK Dons.
He slammed home a penalty to break his duck and kissed the Chelsea badge in an outpouring of emotion in Buckinghamshire.
His relationship with former manager Jose Mourinho had appeared to have become strained and the Belgian was playing with the weight of the world on his shoulders before the arrival of Hiddink.
Blues supporters will be hoping Hazard can now kick on and replicate last season’s form in the business end of the season, however Hiddink doesn’t see the MK moment as being quite so pivotal.
Chelsea's 5-1 win over MK Dons in pictures:
“I don’t know if that goal is a big, big issue,” he said.
“Eden scored although the ball was rather static and of course you would prefer to make a goal from an open-play attack, which is the next step, but I think he is not so worried about that.
“The key for him and for us is that he is coming to the level where he can play repeatedly and do a lot of actions.
“That is why we started him and he played one hour. He came back from a long-time injury and still has to step up to a higher physical level which he has done now in a game but also needs to do in training.
“That is what he needs for now, for the next weeks and also for the summer.”
Hazard’s penalty against MK Dons was his 50th goal for Chelsea and he’ll be hoping to add another to his tally at Watford’s Vicarage Road this evening.