Chelsea’s Roberto Di Matteo tells Eden Hazard he must be patient

Roberto Di Matteo tells Chelsea new-boy Eden Hazard that he must be patient in his first season in English football

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta
eden hazard
Eden Hazard scored 20 goals in 38 appearances for Lille last season Photo: Soccer.ru, via Wikimedia

eden hazard

Roberto Di Matteo has warned Eden Hazard it will take time for him to adapt to the rigours of English football after Chelsea were beaten 3-1 by Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday.

Frank Lampard’s opener was cancelled out by Vicente’s equaliser, before Gus Poyet’s men took the lead in the 43rd minute courtesy of an Ashley Barnes strike.

Andrew Crofts then added gloss to the scoreline as the Blues ended their pre-season campaign in defeat, having shipped 10 goals in five friendlies.

Di Matteo believes the new arrivals at Stamford Bridge, including Hazard – who sealed a £32m move to west London from Lille this summer – need to be patient as they settle into life in England.

“We haven’t had the whole team together yet,” said Di Matteo after Saturday’s defeat.

“Some players have only been back nine days, some 16, some 21 and some are not back at all, but when they are back we can all work together.

“Hazard played on the left, we want him to be incisive, he had good spells but we need to be patient, he’s a young man coming from a different league and it takes time to adapt.

“I was looking to get some players 90 minutes so I didn’t want to make many changes, seven played the whole game and we left some players back at Cobham to train.”

Di Matteo’s side take on Premier League champions Manchester City in the Community Shield next Sunday at Villa Park before the new season kicks off the following weekend.

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