Eden Hazard has scored some pretty special goals throughout his career, but he credits Zinedine Zidane, his current manager at Real Madrid, as having netted the best strike ever.
Zidane has gone down in Champions League folklore having led Madrid to three consecutive titles as manager, but made his first indelible mark on the competition as a player with a spectacular left-foot volley in the 2002 Champions League final against Bayer Leverkusen.
Santiago Solari, another former Real Madrid manager, had managed to play a ball over the top for Roberto Carlos, who managed to hopefully hook the ball into the area.
But there waiting was Zidane, who still had a lot of work to do, with angles against him, while timing such a volley is an incredibly difficult skill.
However, what followed stunned the crowd in attendance in Glasgow, as he swivelled on his right foot and applied the right amount of power and precision to his dipping left-foot strike.
Even someone with the height of Hans Jorg Butt was unable to prevent the effort from creeping under the bar.
The goal proved to be the winner after Lucio had cancelled out Raul’s opener at Hampden Park, and has led Hazard to maintain that there has been none better.
‘Best goal of all time? Zidane’s volley against Bayer Leverkusen,’ Hazard told the club’s official website.
While Hazard will be hoping to replicate the Frenchman’s feats in Glasgow 17 years ago in this season’s competition, his and Real Madrid’s immediate focus remains on domestic matters and this weekend’s derby against Atletico Madrid.
The sides occupy the top two positions in La Liga, but it is Real who currently hold a one-point advantage over their city rivals ahead of what promises to be a fiercely competitive derby.
However, the Belgian will not refrain from warmly greeting his friends on the opposing team, the most notable of whom is Diego Costa.
The duo played and won two Premier League titles together for three years at Chelsea before the Spain striker left for Diego Simeone’s men.
Hazard has now joined Costa in the Spanish capital and has described his former team-mate as the player he most wants to face.
‘Special opponent? Diego Costa is the opposing player I want to come up against because he’s my friend and we played together.’
Hazard himself has had a tough start to life at Real Madrid and has managed to play just three games so far this season without registering a goal or assist.
The 28-year-old arrived at the Santiago Bernabeu ‘overweight’ and with ‘no confidence’, according to reports in Spain, and his side looked similarly bereft of self-belief early in the campaign, with two draws and a defeat coming from their first three matches.
Their defeat to Paris Saint-Germain on the opening matchday of this year’s Champions League appeared to exacerbate the problems, but two wins in as many La Liga games in the past week has put them back on top of the pile in Spain.