Football News

Eden Hazard free to leave Real Madrid if he wants, says Carlo Ancelotti

By Ben Green

Published: 14:16, 31 October 2021

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti says he won’t stand in Eden Hazard’s way if the Belgian wants to leave the club after falling down the pecking order.

Hazard has endured an injury hit and inconsistent two-and-a-bit years at the Bernabeu since trading Chelsea for Los Blancos in 2019 for a fee just south of £100m.

During his time in the Spanish capital, the one-time Premier League Player of the Season has seen his potential buffeted by various injury issues, but he has been fully fit this season, a notion confirmed by Ancelotti earlier this month, and yet can’t get into the side on a consistent basis.

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“He is ready to play, but the problem is that there is a coach who prefers another player,” Ancelotti recently said. The 30-year-old has struggled to supplant Vinicius Junior on the left, with the burgeoning Brazilian flourishing under Ancelotti this campaign, with nine goals and five assists in 14 games.

With a route to the first team uncertain for Hazard, who was an unused substitute in the win over rivals Barcelona earlier this month, and with the ex-Chelsea talisman afforded just 21 and five minutes in the last two La Liga games against Osasuna and Elche respectively, questions have emerged about his future.

Regarding that point, Ancelotti has now come out and declared that he will not stand in Hazard’s way if the struggling forward were to seek a move away from Real.

“Never in my career as a coach have I forced a player to stay when they want to leave,” Ancelotti stated. “In my own personal opinion I don’t have any doubts about that.”

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On whether he has been overburdening Hazard’s current competition for a place in Vinicius Junior with too much game time, Ancelotti said: “I don’t think so.

“He’s fine, he’s young and recovers better than others. If he has a problem or suffers a drop in form then we can rest him. But right now we are very happy with him.”

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