Jose Mourinho revealed tonight that winger Eden Hazard was dropped for the Champions League game against Schalke as a punishment for missing the first team's training session on Monday.
Hazard attended his former club Lille's Ligue 1 2-0 win over Monaco on Sunday night, where he was on the pitch at half-time as part of a belated farewell to the club's supporters. He was due to get the train back early the following day but was not back in time for the morning session at the club's training ground in Cobham
When asked why Hazard had not been named in the squad, Mourinho first tried to avoid the question. He said: “Do I need to clear it up? Apparently Willian [Hazard's replacement] played fantastic”.
Pushed further on the subject, he said that he “was not lying” when he had told Sky Sports earlier that Hazard had been dropped for disciplinary reasons. “He forgot the time, that's the end of the story,” he said. “He's a kid and kids make mistakes and fathers have to be clever in the way they educate their sons. He wanted to play. He was sad because he didn't play but we won without him. On Saturday [against West Bromwich Albion], he is back so end of story.”
Mourinho praised the performance of Samuel Eto'o who scored the first two goals in a 3-0 win. He said: “Samuel was, for two years, playing without big motivation. When you play without big motivation, you train without big motivation, and you lose condition, sharpness and even appetite. It was not a surprise for me that he arrived here not in the best condition after two years in Anzhi.
“Now, step by step, he's growing. He's 32, but fit and slim. Not a heavy boy. He's intelligent of course. Goals give confidence. The first one was a 'fox' goal. The second goal was a very good collective goal: Willian's choice was fantastic, Ramires' run to give him an extra option was fantastic, and Samuel's movement was excellent.”
Mourinho said that Fernando Torres had suffered an adductor injury and would use the international break to recuperate, although there were no guarantees he would be back in time for the Premier League game against West Ham on 23 November.