Eden Hazard’s dream of signing for Real Madrid finally came true this summer.
The Belgian star was granted his wish to join Los Blancos, who forked out £90 million for his signature, by Chelsea.
He left Stamford Bridge with the best wishes of everybody associated with Chelsea after giving the Blues seven memorable seasons.
Around 50,000 Real Madrid fans turned up to welcome him at his presentation earlier this summer.
This was the dream signing for many Madridistas. Hazard was arguably the Premier League’s best player; a world-class winger with the quality to inspire his new club to glory in the most prestigious competitions.
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And the 28-year-old, wearing the number 50 shirt on his back, made a positive impression on his debut against Bayern Munich earlier this month.
Madrid lost the match 3-1, but Hazard showed enough quality to suggest he would hit the ground running.
However, Hazard’s subsequent performances - against Arsenal, Atletico Madrid and Tottenham - have left a lot to be desired.
He was subbed off at half-time against Arsenal (a game Madrid won on penalties after a 2-2 draw), went off as a second-half substitute when his team were losing 6-0 against Atletico (that game ended 7-3), and failed to impress during his 80-minute appearance during Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat against Spurs.
Very little came off for Hazard against the Premier League side in Munich.
And it was his wayward cross-field pass which led to Harry Kane scoring the game’s only goal.
Watch his 'highlights' here... (click play on the black video window).
Following his latest underwhelming performance, Madrid-based newspaper Marca have questioned Hazard, saying the Belgium international has now had “three anonymous matches”.
They also say that, right now, Hazard “isn’t that x-factor the fans need to get behind the team”.
“Hazard still hasn't found his place in this Real Madrid team,” Marca’s Juan Ignacio García-Ochoa writes. “He's an extraordinary player who is currently being hampered by the team's overall poor performances.
“Zidane has put him on the left, and upfront, but he still doesn't affect the side's play regularly.
“He delighted in the match against Bayern Munich, but has now had three anonymous matches.
“Of course he will succeed in Madrid, but for now he isn't that x-factor the fans need to get behind the team.”
It’s possible that Hazard’s current physical condition is also hindering his performance levels.
It was revealed earlier this week - per Diego Torres Romano of El Pais - that Hazard arrived to Real Madrid training seven kilograms overweight.
He hasn’t even lost half of that yet as we approach the start of the 2019/20 campaign.
Marca and the Madrid supporters are still confident that Hazard will be a star for a team.
However, it’s been an inauspicious start so far and, although it’s only pre-season, the knives will soon be out unless his performances improve quickly.
If Hazard thinks he’s experienced pressure in his career, he hasn’t seen anything yet.
Real Madrid pressure is another level.News Now - Sport News