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Chelsea magician Eden Hazard is set to miss the start of the new season after he injured his ankle during training while away on international duty with Belgium.

Chelsea great Joe Cole admits it’s a shame to see Eden Hazard injured but he also believes the injury would help Chelsea keep Hazard with Real Madrid reportedly interested in the 26-year-old.

Cole also urged Chelsea to keep hold of Hazard because it would be impossible to replace the Belgian.

“He is fantastic. He is one of the top players in the world,” Cole told Goal.

“It is a shame he got this injury with Belgium but with the speculation that was coming, on a selfish point of view for Chelsea, it might mean that we can keep hold of him for another year [with Real Madrid interested].

“For me, he is the best player at the club. I think he is the best player in the league. I can’t speak highly enough of him. He would be very expensive to replace. I don’t know where you could go to replace him. Eden is a leader in the dressing room.

“He is also very well liked in the dressing room. People around the club like him and he appears to have settled very well. He is an established player and it is very important that the club keeps hold of him.”

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