- Eden Hazard has confirmed his decision to retire at the age of 32
- Former Belgian international has been without a club since leaving Real Madrid
- Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast It’s All Kicking Off!
Eden Hazard has confirmed his decision to retire from football at the age of 32 in a post on social media.
The 32-year-old has been without a club since being released by Spanish giants Real Madrid this summer after making just 76 appearances for the club in four seasons.
After leaving Real Madrid, a return to top-level football seems out of the question as Hazard made several suggestions to put his boots aside for good.
The winger reportedly had some English clubs interested in him after leaving Madrid, but concerns over his fitness appeared to be a major barrier.
And now the former Chelsea star has confirmed his decision to retire for good in a lengthy post on his Instagram page.
Eden Hazard has confirmed his retirement from football at the age of 32 in a post on social media
Hazard made a lasting impression at Chelsea during his seven years in West London
The winger failed to find a new club after being released by Real Madrid in the summer
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The former Chelsea and Real Madrid star wrote: ‘You have to listen to yourself and say stop at the right time.
‘After 16 years and more than 700 games played, I have decided to end my career as a professional footballer.
‘I was able to realize my dream, I played on many fields around the world and had fun.
“Throughout my career I have been fortunate to meet great managers, coaches and teammates. I want to thank everyone for these great times, I will miss you all.
‘I would also like to thank the clubs I played for: LOSC, Chelsea and Real Madrid; and thank the KBVB for my Belgian Selection.
‘A special thank you to my family, my friends, my advisors and the people who have been close to me in good and bad times.
‘Finally, I would like to say a huge thank you to you, my fans, who have followed me all these years and for your encouragement everywhere I have played.
‘This is the time to enjoy my loved ones and gain new experiences. See you soon off the field, my friends.”
The winger came through the ranks at French side Lille before switching to Chelsea
In 253 appearances for the clubs, Hazard scored 110 goals and recorded 92 assists
Hazard was instrumental in the Blues winning multiple titles, including two Europa Leagues, during his time in West London
Hazard twice won the Premier League and the PFA Player of the Year award with Chelsea, as well as two La Liga titles and the Champions League with Real Madrid.
However, the Belgian winger suffered 18 separate injuries during his time in the Spanish capital, ruling him out of 95 appearances for club and country in that time.
This was completely at odds with his time at Chelsea, where the Belgian was rarely injured and recorded 110 goals and 92 assists in 352 appearances for the Blues.
Despite playing a small role in Madrid, Hazard still managed to claim six titles, having also won the Copa del Rey, Spanish Super Cup and UEFA Super Cup.
During his time at Blues, Hazard also won two Europa League titles, one FA Cup and one League Cup.
On an individual basis, Hazard was named PFA Players’ Player of the Year and Premier League Player of the Season during the 2014–15 campaign.
He also won the Chelsea Player of the Year award four times after his stunning performances on the wing for the Blues.
Hazard started his career at French side Lille, where he scored 50 goals and recorded 53 assists from 194 appearances.
During his time there he also won the 2010/11 Ligue 1 title and the Coupe de France in the same season.
After impressing in France, Hazard then secured a move to west London after the Blues agreed to spend £32 million on the 21-year-old.
More to follow…
IT’S ALL GOING OFF!