Thomas Vermaelen - Real Madrid will see the best of Eden Hazard soon
Real Madrid's record signing Eden Hazard has had a hard time in Spain ever since he moved from Chelsea for £89 million in 2019.
The Belgium international has been blighted by ankle and leg problems since joining the Spanish giants from Chelsea nearly 18 months ago. Last season he started just 14 games in La Liga, playing a minor role as Madrid won the title in his first campaign at the club.
He has continued to struggle this term and suffered another injury in just his third league start of the campaign against Alaves last week. His Belgium teammate Thomas Vermaelen, however, has thrown his weight behind the winger and has stated that Real Madrid will see the best of Hazard soon.
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"Firstly, everybody is very quick to say that he's got an injury. Injury-prone and that kind of stuff. I think he had a knock on his ankle and that's not his fault. It must be a muscle injury. I think it's not too bad," he told Goal.
Vermaelen, currently in Qatar for the AFC Champions League campaign with his Japanese club Vissel Kobe, stated that the 29-year-old is a world-class player and he will show his best in Real Madrid colours sooner rather than later.
"For me personally he's a world-class player, played against him in England. He will come back. He's very positive. When he comes back and starts playing the game. You'll see the best of him. I'm not worried about him. He'll come back."
The 35-year-old defender also had words of encouragement for his former club and Real Madrid's arch-rivals, Barcelona. The Blaugrana are also struggling in LaLiga this season, currently languishing in the seventh spot, a far cry from the excellence they are used to.
Off-field issues like Lionel Messi's transfer request and subsequent board-level changes have also affected the team.
Vermaelen, who won four La Liga titles and a Champions League trophy with the club, believes that the Camp Nou faithful will witness their favourite club at their very best soon.
"For me its just about the side. They have some problems financially as well. Barcelona is always a good team. Everyone is expecting Barcelona to be at the top of the club every season which is so difficult. Sometimes it goes like that.
"Eventually, Barcelona will come back at the top. At the moment, maybe it will be difficult for the situation the club is in."