Chelsea and Belgium skipper Eden Hazard has been left out of his side’s Europa League team to face POAK tomorrow night after complaining of tiredness to his manager Maurizio Sarri. The Italian gaffer has taken his decision as Hazard complained of serious fatigue after the Blues’ win over Cardiff at the weekend.
He was left on the bench for FA Cup holders’ first two league matches of the new season but has come back into the starting XI in recent weeks. Hazard was Belgium’s most influential player at the World Cup in Russia which ended at the semi-final stage and that has been the excuse given for his poor fitness at the start of this season.
As with most World Cup stars, Hazard was given an extended holiday for his exploits at the World Cup with Belgium and missed some of Chelsea’s pre-season matches. Hazard has since then been on top form for Chelsea, and he’s currently leading the race for the Golden Boot with five goals in five games.
Sarri, when questioned about Hazard’s fitness had to say:
“Eden Hazard told me that after the national team and after the match against Cardiff he was a little bit tired so I thought it was better to stay in Cobham, to have training and to rest.”
Ross Barkley and Cesc Fabregas are likely to be the one to get a start for Chelsea even though Ruben Loftus Cheek has only played 33 minutes this season, Sarri is not confident of giving him more game time:
“He is a good player but I don’t know if there is a spot for him. Of course, there will be a spot for him in the future. Now it is difficult because in the first part of the season it is important to play with possibly the same players, just to have a solid team, but I have to change four or five players.”