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Sarri hazard's a guess Belgian star will stay at Chelsea

AFP  |  London 

Maurizio is satisfied Courtois' departure to Real will not trigger further defections such as the Belgian goalkeeper's compatriot, playmaker

believes Hazard is happy and does not have the same personal reasons as to move to -- he wanted to be closer to his two young children who live there with their mother, from whom he is estranged.

is preparing for his managerial debut against tomorrow and he will be seeking a much-improved performance than the limpid one Chelsea gave in the 2-0 defeat by Manchester City in last Sunday's Community Shield.

"I think it's impossible," he said at his eve of match press conference about the possibility of losing further players to mainland European clubs whose transfer window unlike England's -- which shut on Thursday -- remains open till August 31.

"Here the market is closed, so we cannot change important players now. It's impossible.

"Hazard is with us.

"I think definitely. It's not a problem. I have spoken with him three, four times, for everything.

"He never said something about the market. I think he's very happy to stay here."

Sarri -- who came through an unconventional route to be a top having started working life as an -- said the outlay of 80 million euros, a record fee for a goalkeeper, for replacement from Athletic Bilbao is a wise investment.

Seven months ago, Kepa's buyout clause was just 20 million euros and it was he who looked set to join Real in January.

"The situation was clear," said Sarri.

"He wanted to go to Madrid, so we lost maybe one of the most important goalkeepers in the world now.

"We bought a young goalkeeper, I think one of the most important amongst the young goalkeepers in I'm really happy," added the 59-year-old Italian.

Sarri, who also got Croatian on a season-loan from Real Madrid, accepted Kepa would take time to reach the heights of Courtois.

"He's very young, 23," said Sarri, who would not confirm whether the Spaniard or experienced Argentinian number two Willy Caballero would be between the posts for the Huddersfield game.

"I hope he can improve very fast. For the moment he's not Courtois, for sure.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, August 10 2018. 21:45 IST