Eden Hazard is reported to be targeting the upcoming Madrid Derby on February 1 for his return from injury, as he steps up his recovery in a bid to get back on the pitch.
The Belgian had a difficult start to life in Spain, his club’s poor form welding with reported issues surrounding his weight and overall fitness to create what was an underwhelming new beginning for Hazard after leaving Chelsea.
He was beginning to show flashes of his previously infallible ability throughout November, but just as he looked set to kick on, misfortune struck – in the form of a robust Thomas Meunier challenge that left him on the sidelines with an ankle injury.
He has missed Real’s last 11 matches since that fateful Champions League clash with Paris Saint-Germain, but despite the club pulling themselves together in his prolonged absence – not losing any of those matches – there is a real hunger to see the man who once promised to be their new talisman back on the pitch.
And according to AS, that could come just in time for a key run of fixtures. The Spanish website say Hazard has his sights set on the clash with Atlético Madrid next weekend for a return to the squad, and hopes to get off the bench in that one – even if it is only for a brief cameo.
He is of course keen to return to the starting lineup, but is expected to have to remain patient on that front. The report notes that the clash with Manchester City in the Champions League last 16 is the current target to involve him from the start for the first time since late November.
Zinedine Zidane’s men have plenty to focus on between now and then, however. They will look to go top of La Liga against Valladolid on Sunday evening before their midweek Copa del Rey visit to Real Zaragoza before they can even begin to think about next week’s clash with Atlético, and a potential return for Hazard.
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