2019-09-29 by W.M.
Zinedine Zidane Says Eden Hazard ‘Lacks Little Things’ at Real Madrid
Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has discussed Eden Hazard’s struggles but backed him to succeed at the club.
Hazard’s search for his first goal for Los Blancos continued on Saturday as he failed to make an impact on Real’s 0-0 draw with city rivals Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium.
Per Goal’s Daniel Lewis, Zidane said:
“He lacks little things. We have to stick with him. He’s done a good job, but we haven’t had many chances.
“We have to highlight everyone’s work. We’d like him to score because it’ll release him, but there are no problems, we’re sure it’ll come.”
The Belgian arrived from Chelsea in the summer for an initial €100 million fee, which could rise to €168 million with add-ons.
He was substituted from Saturday’s derby in the 77th minute, without having mustered a shot on goal.
Covering Futbol and Managing Madrid’s Kiyan Sobhani observed his struggles:
Covering Futbol @coveringfutbol
Not really working for Hazard so far – he’s not tracking Trippier so regularly able to get the ball in space on break, but not made much of it yet.
Lucas Navarrete @LucasNavarreteM
Hazard has been painful to watch tonight. Atrocious performance so far.
The 28-year-old’s career at the Santiago Bernabeu was far from ideal, as a hamstring injury affected his pre-season preparations and kept him out of Real’s first three games.
Given he’s at a new club, enjoying a strong pre-season was perhaps even more important than usual, so the fact he didn’t will have made settling in even more difficult than usual.
Despite Hazard’s ineffectual performance, Real had twice as many shots on goal as Atletico and more possession, per BBC Sport.
“We deserved much more, but what I have to do is congratulate the players since we have been supportive again and we kept a clean sheet.
“It’s not just intensity, but what’s important is our strength. We saw a strong Madrid because we didn’t concede a chance. We lacked in creativity but we’re happy with what we did.”
The draw was Madrid’s third in seven La Liga matches this season.
However, Real are top of the table and the only unbeaten team left in the Spanish top flight, having already played two of their most difficult away fixtures at Sevilla and Atletico.
It is an ominous sign for their rivals that they’ve done so with Hazard either absent or struggling. If the winger can begin to have the kind of impact he made at Chelsea, he’ll take Real to another level.