Hazard issues public apology to Real

UEFA Champions League

Real Madrid star Eden Hazard has issued a public apology after being seen joking with former Chelsea teammates following Los Blancos' UEFA Champions League exit.

Hazard caused a stir following Real Madrid's 3-1 semi-final defeat to Chelsea in the Champions League semi-finals on Wednesday when he was filmed laughing with former Blues teammate Kurt Zouma after the match.

The 30-year-old was widely criticised and his actions went viral after the clipping was used as part of a dramatised tirade against the Belgian by El Chiringuito host Josep Pedrerol, who described him as an "overweight Gareth Bale" and called for the club to cut their losses.

Hazard has since responded to the backlash levelled against him and issued a public apology for offending the Los Blancos supporters, calling for everyone to get behind the team as they pursue the LaLiga title.

"I am sorry. I have read lots of opinions about me today and it was not my intention to offend the Real Madrid fans," Hazard said, per The Athletic.

"It has always been my dream to play for Real Madrid and I came here to win. The season is not over and together we must battle for La Liga! Hala Madrid!"

The two-time Belgian Footballer of the Year has endured a nightmare spell in Madrid since his €100 million (R1.7bn) move from Chelsea in 2019, scoring just four times in 40 appearances after suffering a string of injury setbacks.

Scroll through the gallery below to see where Hazard ranks among Real Madrid's highest-paid players

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