Jose Mourinho has hit out at Eden Hazard, saying the Real Madrid winger is an amazing player but could be even better were he not an “awful” trainer.
Mourinho coached Hazard for two and a half seasons at Chelsea, a period during which they helped the Blues win the Premier League, Europa League and League Cup.
Hazard moved to Real Madrid in 2019, but his €100 million (£86m/$121m) transfer has yet to pan out amid a series of injuries.
What was said?
“The truth is what you see from him, he is an amazing player with awful training,” Mourinho charged during an interview on talkSPORT.
“You can only imagine what he could be with a super professional attitude in training.
“In the end, he is an amazing kid, he is an incredible family man, he looks like he doesn’t belong to this generation of players, he’s very quiet and is totally focused on family, on kids, on parents, on a very quiet life.
“But he gets onto the pitch every morning and … he doesn’t work much.
“When he gets onto the pitch you don’t see the reflection of a week of work, you just see a reflection of his talent.
“He is this amazing player and you can imagine if he was a top professional. When he went to Real Madrid I thought, ‘Wow, this guy is going to the biggest club in the world and is going to feel this huge pressure to be always at the top, this guy is going to win the Golden Ball, because he is amazing.’
“But in terms of his fitness, his speed, his condition, he would be a much better player [if he trained properly]. What you see is just the talent that got Eden to where he is.”
Mourinho backs Hazard at Euro 2020
Hazard, long a vital figure for Belgium, has been used off the bench in his country’s two opening matches at Euro 2020.
The 30-year-old is being brought along slowly after another injury-hit season with Madrid, but Mourinho has backed him to eventually show his best at the tournament.
“In this case, he is back to Belgium, back to the big stage, you can feel he has a good relationship with Roberto Martinez, but he is on the bench at this moment,” Mourinho said.
“But he will be ready to jump to win watches, so I believe Belgium will end the Euros with Eden starting and probably at the top of his game.”