Andre Schurrle was thrilled to be the beneficiary of both Eden Hazard’s skill and vision on Saturday, after the first two of the German’s three goals at Craven Cottage were impressively assisted by the in-form Hazard. Our opener arrived after Schurrle cushioned a throw-in into the Belgian’s path and raced onto the perfectly weighted return ball before finishing coolly. The same pair linked up for our and Schurrle’s second, the combination on that occasion taking place a little closer to Fulham’s goal but with the same result.
Our latest hat-trick hero – doubling his Chelsea goals tally in the process – explained his thinking behind the duo’s fine work in that devastating second-half spell.
‘When I play on the right wing and he plays on the left it’s perfect because I know he can take on two or three people and beat them,’ said the 23-year-old.
‘When I start my run he already knows that I’m running and he has the quality to make the pass to me. That’s what we did two times, he made two perfect passes, and the third from Fernando was very good. Eden a great player, everybody knows it, and he was brilliant.’
Before Saturday’s success Schurrle had not started a Premier League game since New Year’s Day, but the attacking midfielder now has consecutive starts to his name having also begun last Wednesday’s draw with Galatasaray. Following his clinical hat-trick at Fulham he will be pushing for a start in our next game – another London derby – at home to Tottenham, where he will be hoping to replicate the link-up play with Hazard that proved so decisive at the weekend.
Schurrle outlined what aspects of his game he has been working on following discussions with Jose Mourinho earlier this season. It is hard work that has clearly paid off.
‘We talked a lot, of course, and he told me I needed to change my game and my body,’ said Schurrle. ‘And that’s what I’ve done over the last two months. I’ve really worked very hard to be aggressive, to be in a good shape with my body.
‘I did a lot in the gym but I wanted to do this, I needed to do this. I wanted to change and I think I have. I want to play and I want to score goals for this great team and for these great fans. Now I’m ready to play more often.’