Football

Real Madrid forward Eden Hazard fans the flames with fan comment

Belgian star claims Los Blancos fans care more than Chelsea supporters

Since joining Real Madrid in the summer, Eden Hazard has noticed a difference between fans of Los Blancos and his former club Chelsea.

And what he has to say would almost certainly make the most diehard Blues fan see red.

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In an interview with Uefa ahead of their Champions League opener against Paris Saint-Germain tomorrow morning (Singapore time), Hazard has claimed that Real supporters care more than their Chelsea counterparts.

When asked what are the most exciting things about playing football in Spain, he replied: "Here, the fans are really fans.

"In England, there are not so many fans, people there like football and everyone, young people, adults, teenagers, are really interested in their football, but they are not so fanatical about their teams.

"At the time I was in Chelsea and we lost, we were disappointed as were the fans, but I never felt it was a disaster. It is different in Spain.

"Football is everything to them and it is up to the players to give everything."

Having finally recovered from a thigh injury, Hazard made his competitive debut for Real in last Saturday's 3-2 win over Levante, coming on as a substitute in the 60th minute.

His availability would come as a relief to Real coach Zinedine Zidane, who will be without captain Sergio Ramos, Marco Asensio, Isco and Luka Modric due to suspension and injuries.

Zidane's Paris Saint-Germain counterpart Thomas Tuchel won't have all his players at his disposal, too.

He will be missing his star-studded front trio of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Edinson Cavani, who accounted for 11 of PSG's 20 goals in last season's Champions League.

In their absence, summer loan signing Mauro Icardi or Cameroon forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting could lead the line at the Parc des Princes.

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Mbappe picked up a hamstring injury and was forced off against Toulouse last month and has not featured since for PSG, while Cavani is out of action with a hip problem.

Neymar, who scored a stoppage-time winner in their 1-0 victory over Strasbourg last Saturday - his first PSG appearance of the season - has been banned for insulting match officials on social media last season.

But his three-match suspension has been reduced to two following an appeal, the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled yesterday, reported AFP.

The Brazilian will miss the matches against Real and Galatasaray in two weeks, but will now be free to face Belgian side Club Brugge on Oct 22.

Neymar had criticised the referee and his assistants after PSG's last-16 collapse against Manchester United in March.

United were awarded a penalty deep into injury time after a protracted VAR decision, which Marcus Rashford scored to knock the French side out of the Champions League.

"It's a disgrace. They get four guys who don't understand football to watch a slow motion replay in front of the TV," Neymar, who was watching the match from the stands, posted on his Instagram account after the 3-1 defeat.

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