Willian has claimed that he will inherit Eden Hazard’s number ten shirt at Chelsea following the playmaker’s exit.
The shirt has been left vacant following Hazard’s move to Real Madrid this summer, the Belgian international moving to the Bernabeu in a deal which could be worth up to £130m.
Christian Pulisic, who many see as Hazard’s natural replacement following his £58m arrival from Borussia Dortmund, wears the number ten for the United States men’s national team, although the 20-year-old is yet to be allocated his squad number for the new season.
Highly-rated teenager Callum Hudson-Odoi was also tipped to take the in-demand number, with Chelsea desperate to persuade the winger to commit his long-term future to Chelsea.
Hudson-Odoi has entered the final year of his contract at Stamford Bridge and is thought to want assurances over his playing time before signing a new deal, with reports suggesting he could be offered Hazard’s shirt as evidence of his growing importance.
However, Willian has now confirmed that he has been offered the shirt number ahead of the new campaign. The Brazilian has worn the number 22 since joining from Shakhtar Donetsk in 2013, though will now switch to ten.
“I was offered the number 10 jersey ahead of next season and I will take it,” Willian told Brazilian TV show, Desimpedidos.
In other Chelsea related news, Ethan Ampadu has joined Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig for the coming season.