Roma boss Rudi Garcia has revealed Chelsea used Didier Drogba to open the door that eventually led to Eden Hazard joining the Premier League side.
Hazard, 23, moved to Stamford Bridge from Lille in the summer of 2012 in an estimated 40 million euro deal.
The highly sought-after Belgium international had a host of clubs chasing his signature, but opted for Chelsea after former Blues forward Drogba contacted fellow Ivorian Gervinho, who was Hazard's teammate at Lille at the time, to help pave the way from northern France to west London.
"Didier Drogba is an important player for Ivory Coast, but also in all the clubs he has been at. It's true that [Chelsea owner] Roman Abramovich, via Didier Drogba, created that contact to sound out Eden Hazard a little bit," Garcia, who has Hazard's coach at Lille for four seasons, told RMC.
"They weren't the only club interested in him, but he's at Chelsea, a club with which he is currently doing great things. He's a great talent. He's very effective, which is what he's being asked to do. It's not a surprise."
Hazard is currently Chelsea's top scorer in the Premier League this season with 12 goals, three more than he scored in the competition for the whole of the last campaign.