Joe Cole names Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard as the best player he played with

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Former England international Joe Cole retired last week (Picture: Getty)

Joe Cole has named Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard as the best player he played with.

Former England international Cole announced his retirement at the age of 37 last week.

Cole graduated through West Hams academy system before playing for Chelsea, Liverpool, Lille, Aston Villa and MLS outfit Tampa Bay Rowdies.

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The ex-midfielder, who scored ten goals in 56 appearances for England, played alongside the likes of Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney.

But he says Hazard, who he played alongside in France, ranks as the most talented played he witnessed.

Asked to name the best player he shared a dressing room with, Cole told Sky Sports: You look at all the English boys – Gerrard, Frank [Lampard], JT [John Terry], Rooney, Rio [Ferdinand].

Eden Hazard can win the Ballon dOr, according to Cole (Picture: Getty)

Also the foreign players like [Arjen] Robben and Hazard… I could go on forever. You realise youre playing with geniuses.

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If my life depended on it I would pick Hazard [as the best]. He was 19 when I played with him in France and even then he was just so talented.

He had everything. Hes just a great player. I think hell go on to win the Ballon dOr, I really think hes that good.

Joe Cole retirement statement

It has been a dream come true. All of it. I hope the next two decades are as special as my last 20 years as a professional have been.

Winning trophies at Chelsea was particularly special for me. Those memories will live with me forever.

There are key moments in every professionals career. One of mine came when I was a young West Ham player.

A senior pro, who was nearing his own retirement, said to me, Enjoy every game, young man. It goes by in the blink of an eye and youll miss it badly after its gone.

He was right. Those words resonate even more now than they did back then.

I tried to play and live by his advice every single day because being a professional footballer is an absolute honour.

Hazard is in the form of his career, starring at last summers World Cup for Belgium before enjoying a superb start to the new season at Stamford Bridge.

Last month, the 27-year-old was named on the shortlist for the Ballon dOr award but he says he does not deserve to take the gong home.

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Even though I had a very good year, I have to keep my feet on the ground, Hazard told RTFB.

I do not deserve the Ballon dOr. I think there are players who have been better than me.

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Winning the Ballon dOr is not a goal for me. If I win it one day, great. If I do not, it wont be a problem.

I would have said Luka Modric but he has played a little less well since August and September.

So, if we take into account the beginning of the season, I would say Kylian Mbappe.

MORE: Man Utd eye cut-price deal for Tottenham star Toby Alderweireld

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