Former Chelsea star Eden Hazard has explained why his infamous sending off for kicking a Swansea ball boy in 2013 helped him after receiving a three-match ban for the incident.
Hazard was involved in a tense moment during the second leg of the League Cup semi-final, in which Chelsea were trailing 2-0 on aggregate, at the Liberty Stadium when ball boy Charlie Morgan attempted to hold on to the ball. to run out the time, while his team sought to reach the final.
When the Belgian attempted to remove the ball from his arms, appearing to kick it in the process, referee Chris Foy gave him marching orders to cap an unforgettable night for Chelsea.
Hazard, who retired from football in October after leaving Real Madrid, has since reunited with Morgan, who is now a successful businessman worth more than £40m thanks to his vodka empire.
Reflecting on the moment while speaking to former teammate John Obi Mikel on the Obi One podcast, Hazard revealed that the red card was a good thing for him.
Eden Hazard has revealed why his infamous red card for kicking a ball boy in 2013 ended up working in his favor
Earlier this year, Hazard met ball boy Charlie Morgan, who is now worth more than £40million thanks to his vodka empire.
When asked if it was bad timing for him, Hazard said it actually came at the perfect time because his wife Natacha was about to have a baby.
“Not at all, because after that game I came home and said to myself, ‘This guy just kept the ball and I just tried to kick it,’ and then I got a red card? He started it.
‘The funny story is that my wife was pregnant and the baby was about to be born now, that day. Some? Receive the red card? Three games out? Perfect. Thats the reality. Perfect holiday, thanks guys!’
Mikel then laughed when Hazard insisted the kicking incident was unintentional.
“They’re going to think I did it on purpose, but not at all,” he added. ‘It’s a bit like when you play in the street. Is anyone aware? “Hey, give me the ball man.”
The Belgian explained that the three-match ban allowed him to be there to accompany his wife while she gave birth to their son.
Hazard and Natacha, who married in 2012, had four children together.
In that chat between Hazard and Morgan, the pair posed while taking photos and holding glasses of Morgan’s blue raspberry vodka.
He wrote on X (formerly Twitter): ‘The good thing about retirement is catching up with old friends. You’ve come a long way in 11 years, my friend @charliem0rgan, @auvodka x @hazardeden10.’
Hazard posted several other photos on his Instagram account, showing the two looking at a chess board that had several bottles of AU Vodka on it.
They were also seen driving a golf cart around a golf course together, with Hazard posting a photo of himself lining up a putt as the former Swansea ballboy watched in the distance.
Elsewhere in the podcast, Hazard also discussed his weight during his career and revealed how he would return from pre-season overweight each year after rumors that he often arrived out of shape.
“It was true,” Hazared said. “But me, every summer I gained four or five kilos because I thought that you give a lot for 10 months, you put your body at the highest level and people kick you, so your free time is your free time.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Hazard revealed that he was overweight every year during pre-season, after his publicized problems at Real Madrid.
‘Don’t ask me to do anything. I enjoy being with my family, going to the beach, so don’t ask me to run in those three or four weeks. I can play soccer on the beach with my children, no problem, but don’t ask me to run.
“But if you look throughout my career, the first month (of the season) is the part where I thought it was just the beginning, and then from September to October I was flying, because I needed time to put my body and my mind in the best way.
—So yes, it’s true, I came back from vacation with five kilos, I knew it.
“As a Belgian, we love beers because my country has the best beers in the world, so I’m not telling you that I used to drink every day because it’s not true, but sometimes, after a good game, one or two is good” . .’
In Hazard’s seven years of success at Chelsea, the Blues won two Premier League titles, one FA Cup, two League Cups and two Europa League trophies.
Eden Hazard spoke at the Obi Uno Podcast.