Chelsea star reveals who will take Eden Hazard’s number 10 shirt
Willian, who is one of the Blues longest-serving players, has been offered the shirt for the upcoming season.
The Brazilian has claimed to have accepted the club’s gesture while appearing on Desimpedidos, a TV show in his homeland.
“I was offered the number 10 jersey ahead of next season and I will take it,” he said.
That may come as a surprise to Chelsea fans who thought Callum Hudson-Odoi was a shoo-in for the marquee number.
He is currently still negotiating an extended deal at Stamford Bridge having rejected several offers last term.
The arrival of Frank Lampard is understood to be a game changer for the 18-year-old who struggled for opportunities under Maurizio Sarri.
But the number 10 shirt was rumoured to be an extra motive for the academy graduate to extend his stay.
Bayern Munich do remain interest in Hudson-Odoi having had several transfer bids turned down in January.
They see the rising star as a replacement for the now departed duo Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery.
But Lampard is having to prepare his Chelsea squad for the new season without any new recruits leaving the hierarchy reluctant to part with any of their current crop.
A transfer ban looms over the west London club with their appeal awaiting review by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
But being prohibited from signing players is seen as a blessing in disguise by some who hope the Blues can finally make use of their plethora of young talent.
Hudson-Odoi, along with Ruben Loftus-Cheek, is among the most high-profile of those and begun making inroads into the Chelsea starting XI last term.
Lampard enjoyed success at Derby last term with Blues loanees Mason Monut and Fikayo Timori playing vital roles.
Expectations are for the club legend to continue offering youth a chance to prosper in the first team and that could convince Hudson-Odoi to stay – regardless of whether he wears 10 or 20 on his back.