Eden Hazard suffered another injury setback on Saturday as he was substituted in the first half of Real Madrid’s defeat by Alaves in La Liga, with what coach Zinedine Zidane later described as just a “knock”.
The Belgium international, whose first season in Spain was ravaged by injury, was replaced by Rodrygo in the 28th minute, shortly after appealing for a penalty.
Hazard appeared to be caught on his left knee by an Alaves defender as he chased down the rebound after his shot was saved, and was pictured grimacing moments later.
“Eden, I think and I hope it was just a simple knock. That’s what he told us. That it’s just a knock, that it’s not muscular,” Zidane said after the 2-1 loss.
The 29-year-old was limited to just 22 appearances in 2019-20 after joining Real from Chelsea for 100 million euros ($119.6 million), scoring just one goal.
He missed the start of this season due to injury and then tested positive for coronavirus on November 7.
He scored a penalty for his first Champions League goal in a Real shirt in the club’s 2-0 win at Inter Milan in midweek.
Real Madrid slumped to a 2-1 loss at home to Alaves in La Liga on Saturday as city rivals Atletico moved level with leaders Real Sociedad after extending their winning run to six matches.
Lucas Perez scored a fifth-minute penalty at Alfredo di Stefano stadium and Joselu added a second just after half-time following an awful mistake by goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.
Casemiro gave Real a lifeline on 86 minutes but Alaves held on for a victory that lifted them to ninth. Madrid remain in fourth place and six points behind Real Sociedad and Diego Simeone’s Atletico.