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Zidane: “Hazard is ready to start”

The coach did not confirm his presence in the starting XI for the Champions League opener against PSG.

Real Madrid CF v Levante UD - La Liga Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane talked in the pre-match press conference and discussed the team's Champions League opener against Paris Saint-Germain.

As usual, Zidane did not want to announce Madrid's starting lineup, but he delivered a fairly big hint when asked about Hazard's status. The Belgian attacker made his debut with Madrid this past weekend but had to come off the bench because he had just recovered from the thigh injury he picked up a month ago.

"You will see how we're going to play tomorrow, but Hazard is ready to play and ready to start. We've had some good training sessions recently and he's ready," explained the coach.

Ramos and Marcelo will miss the game and that means that Karim Benzema will be Real Madrid's captain in the Parc des Princes. Zidane was asked about the French attacker and he could only praise him.

"It hasn't been easy for him but he's always showed the kind of player he is. He's not only a goalscorer but that's not the most important thing in football. He's a team player and that's what I like the most. I think he's fantastic, just like Tuchel said today. I think the same way," said the Frenchman.

James completed a very solid performance against Levante and appears ready to start for Madrid once again, no matter if it's in the midfield line or behind Benzema as an attacking midfielder.

"We'll see, because he can play everywhere, but it's true that it is easier for him to play upfront. It's important for him to be in good form and he is. His position on the field can change because he is a quality player," explained Zidane.

The Frenchman also discussed PSG's chances in the current edition of the Champions League.

"Yes, they're the candidates to win it because they perform week in and week out. It's true that they are missing some players like Cavani, Neymar and Mbappe, but they're very good without them too. It's not easy to win the Champions League but they are improving every year," concluded Zidane.

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