Real Madrid fans are encouraged after Eden Hazard made his first La Liga appearance since September 11, 2022 on Sunday night in their 6-0 win over Real Valladolid.
In fact, Hazard’s spell in the Spanish capital has been an overall disappointment since his £88.5 million move from Chelsea.
But after showing positive signs on the training ground of late, the Belgian made a brief, but impactful cameo off the Bernabeu bench against an already-defeated Valladolid.
As well as creating four chances in the La Liga clash, he notched an assist for Lucas Vazquez during the 28-minute run out.
Karim Benzema grabbed the headlines with a seven-minute hat-trick in the game but Hazard‘s performance impressed many, including Carlo Ancelotti, who hinted at giving the player more first-team minutes.
After being asked about the whistles he received from Madrid fans on his entrance in the 65th minute, the Italian said post-match: “I heard that, yeah. Eden trained really well this break. He played very little, but he did well and gave an assist.”
Ancelotti added: “By training well he can get opportunities.”
Hazard’s performance also earned praise from supporters on social media.
One commented on the above compilation, saying: “His ball retention is class,” while another said: “Ancelotti has blood on his hands for not giving him minutes, it could’ve been his redemption season.”
A third wrote: “It was a very solid performance from Eden despite the lack of game time in recent months. His talent is more than enough to help him contribute for the rest of the season.”
A fourth added: “Admit it, football is a far more enjoyable sport with Eden Hazard weaving his magic on the pitch instead of rotting on the bench.”
Last month, Hazard insisted that he is keen to stay at Madrid beyond this summer and wants to “show that I can still do it” at the top level.
He also added that he ‘respects’ Los Blancos boss Carlo Ancelotti but revealed that they no longer speak with one another in their professional relationship.
“I would like to stay. I’ve always said that. I hope to play and to show that I can still do it,” Hazard told RTBF.
“People have doubts, that’s normal, I understand. But for me, I’m still here next year. You never know, but a transfer is not in my plan.
“There’s respect between Ancelotti and I. But I’m not going to say we talk to each other, because we don’t. But there will always be respect.
“I have to have respect [for] a guy like Ancelotti. For what he represents for football, and for what he’s done in his career.”