Chelsea: Tuchel rues lack of composure and precision
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Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane is planning to start Eden Hazard against former club Chelsea in the second leg of the Champions League on Wednesday. That is according to reports in Spain, after Hazard made his first start since January 30 in Saturday’s 2-0 La Liga win over Osasuna.
Hazard played the final 25 minutes of the first leg against his former club Chelsea last Tuesday.
The Belgian was unable to give Real an advantage heading into this week’s return leg at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea took the lead early through Christian Pulisic before Karim Benzema equalised for Zidane’s side.
The score remained at 1-1 to make Chelsea slight favourites to meet either Manchester City or Paris Saint-Germain in the final.
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Hazard’s time at Real has been littered with injury problems and he has started just nine matches across La Liga and the Champions League this season.
But the front page of Monday’s edition of AS claims the Belgian is set to start on Wednesday.
Hazard played 72 minutes of the victory over Osasuna in Valdebebas.
And he has seemingly done enough to prove to Zidane he is ready to play a high-profile semi-final.
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It will be the first time Hazard has played against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge since his 2019 departure.
The forward spent seven years in west London, scoring 110 goals in over 350 appearances.
Hazard won six major honours with the Blues, including two Premier League titles, an FA Cup, a League Cup and two Europa League medals.
Speaking after last week’s 1-1 draw, Hazard insisted he was delighted to be back playing after a difficult few months.
“I am just going step by step, of course I want to play, I want to be on the pitch,” Hazard said.
“I played a bit more today than before, we have games before the end of the season and I want to be ready.
“I am just happy to be playing again. It’s always good to play against friends. Now I am a Real Madrid player so I just want to win.”
And on the result, Hazard added: “It could be better and it could be worse! We will go there looking for the win.”
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