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Struggling Real Madrid superstar looking at the World Cup as opportunity to salvage season

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Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Eden Hazard has endured a torrid time since joining Real Madrid from Chelsea in the summer of 2019 in a deal worth over €100 million. Injury and fitness woes have constantly bogged down the Belgian international who has looked like a pale shadow of his past self.

Following Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League triumph last season, the 31-year-old had vowed that the new campaign will be his best in white. But that has not materialised as Hazard has once again struggled to make any sort of impact.

Indeed, the attacker has played just six times across all competitions this term, scoring and assisting just one goal apiece.

Despite his struggles, Hazard has been named in the Belgium squad for the FIFA World Cup along with Thibaut Courtois. The 31-year-old winger will be leading the Red Devils at the quadrennial event in Qatar in over a week.

And, according to AS, Hazard is looking at the World Cup as his opportunity to salvage his struggling campaign and find some form.

As iterated earlier, the veteran wing-wizard has played just six times this term, of which only two have been starts. Furthermore, the attacker has not played a single minute of La Liga football since early September.

For him to earn some relevance in the Real Madrid setup, Hazard will need to enjoy a solid World Cup campaign. A strong performance for Belgium, thus, could help the 31-year-old play an increased part in Carlo Ancelotti’s plans for the second half of the 2022/23 season.

It could also help him attract suitors for either the January window or the summer as Real Madrid will reportedly look to part ways with their record signing in the near future.

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Real Madrid News

Brahim, Tchouameni start in a 4-3-1-2: How Real Madrid could lineup against Sevilla

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Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid are set to play hosts to Sevilla this evening, in what could prove to be a critical match in the context of the title race.

Although Los Blancos hold a formidable lead at the top of the table, the club are coming on the back of a disappointing result against Rayo Vallecano.

Dropping more points against Sevilla tonight could prove to be costly, especially with Barcelona and Girona breathing down their necks.

Potential Real Madrid lineup vs Sevilla

As Real Madrid approach this crucial game, coach Carlo Ancelotti has to make several arrangements, especially with so many players ruled out either due to injury or suspension.

Defence

Starting from the goalkeeper position, Thibaut Courtois remains out, which means Andriy Lunin should continue in between the sticks, ahead of the unhappy Kepa Arrizabalaga.

In the right-back position, Ancelotti is likely to opt for Lucas Vazquez, as Dani Carvajal is suspended after picking up two yellow cards in the last game.

On a bright note, though, Antonio Rudiger is back and should return to central defence. He will be accompanied by Nacho Fernandez at the heart of Real Madrid’s four-man backline.

Rudiger to return after a brief spell on the sidelines (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images)

Elsewhere in defence, Ferland Mendy should continue to start ahead of Fran Garcia in the left-back position.

Midfield

Moving into midfield, Eduardo Camavinga has been ruled out due to suspension. However, Ancelotti does have a myriad of options in the middle of the park.

Aurelien Tchouameni should continue to operate in the number six position, just behind the two interior midfielders Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde.

Luka Modric is an option on the bench, should Ancelotti require more experience in the middle.

Attack

As for the attack, the Real Madrid frontline should be led by Brahim Diaz once again, even though he faces fierce competition from Joselu.

Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo, on the other hand, are guaranteed choices in the wide attacking spaces, though Ancelotti does have Arda Guler and Alvaro Rodriguez as potential alternatives.

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