Eden Hazard and Carlo Ancelotti ‘not talking’ as Real Madrid outsider reveals plans for next season

Eden Hazard has decided to stay at Real Madrid next season as the club’s forgotten superstar is clinging to faint hopes of reviving his career at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The Belgium winger was Chelsea’s Player of the Year in 2018/19, his last season at Stamford Bridge, scoring 16 goals in 37 Premier League games and helping the Blues win the Europa League.

However, since leaving London at the peak of his powers as a 28-year-old, Hazard has suffered a string of injuries that have derailed his Madrid career.

He’s been fit for most of this season but Ancelotti seems to consider him a sideline to his plans and there’s no obvious prospect of his status changing.

Hazard has played just 98 minutes in LaLiga and just 297 minutes in all competitions this season and he has one season left on his contract before the club can sack the €100m man.

Still, Hazard is hopeful a year can be transformative and he told Belgian broadcaster RTBF: “I’d love to stay here. I’ve always dreamed of this club. I’m just waiting for one thing on the pitch to prove that I can still play football even if people doubt what’s normal.

“There’s only one thing that could get me out of the spiral I’m in and that’s to play. After months without a game, I know I wouldn’t score five goals in my first game. I need time.” But at Real we don’t have the time.

“I see in training that I can bring something. I feel good physically. But there are other players who are doing well.”

Hazard is expected to watch Madrid take on Liverpool in the Champions League on Wednesday before taking on Barcelona in LaLiga on Sunday.

Speaking about his relationship with Ancelotti, Hazard said: “There is respect between us. But I won’t say we talk because we don’t talk.

“But there will always be respect. I have to have respect for a guy like Carlo Ancelotti. What he represents for football, what he’s done in his career. That’s not a problem.”

Hazard was such a special player in his prime that effectively begging for a chance to revive his career at the age of 32 is a desperate sin.

He continues to be well paid by Madrid but his professional pride has been shaken.

“I’m not asking to play 90 minutes, just to feel useful,” he said. “Last season it was difficult to live with my situation. Now it concerns me less.”

He claims some Madrid teammates pushed him to move on and find a team to play in.

“But that’s not my option,” he said. “I remain convinced that I can bring something.”

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