Eden Hazard is set to make his return from injury in Real Madrid’s La Liga meeting with Real Sociedad on Thursday, while Gareth Bale is also available once again for Zinedine Zidane.
The Belgian has been out of action since late November after damaging his ankle during Real Madrid’s 2-2 draw against Paris Saint-Germain. Bale has also been absent with an ankle problem, spraining it in the Copa del Rey victory over Unionistas de Salamanca on 22 January.
Spanish journalist Melchor Ruiz confirmed news of the pair’s recovery on Twitter, with Hazard and his counterpart returning to a Madrid team currently three points clear at the top of the table.
Barcelona’s recent 2-0 loss at Valencia saw Real open up a gap over their rivals.
While the Catalans went down at the Mestalla, Los Blancos overcame neighbours Atletico Madrid thanks to Karim Benzema’s goal midway through the second half.
That was the Frenchman’s 18th in all competitions this year, 17 more than Hazard, and 14 ahead of Bale. However, Benzema has made more appearances than the other two combined.
Real paid Chelsea €100m to bring the 29-year-old to the Bernabeu last summer, but he arrived carrying a hamstring problem, which delayed his debut until September.
Bale, on the other hand, has had his start to the season disrupted by calf issues. He has also struggled to win the favour of Zidane for much of his time in the Spanish capital, which has led to persistent rumours of a transfer away.
Despite the issues at Madrid, his agent has moved swiftly to rubbish links to former club Tottenham Hotspur.
Hazard’s future at Real isn’t disputed, though. He simply hasn’t had the opportunity to adjust to life, with the wideman making only 12 starts in an injury-hit debut campaign.
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