Eden Hazard reportedly arrived at Real Madrid’s pre-season tour in Montreal seven kilos overweight.
It has been far from smooth sailing for Bernabeu boss Zinedine Zidane this summer, with his signings failing to impress, Gareth Bale still on the books and the small matter of a 7-3 defeat by city rivals Atletico.
But another troubling issue which has seemingly arisen, a problem Zidane presumably thought he would not have to deal with, is Hazard’s weight.
According to Sport, the Belgian reported for duty on the club’s pre-season tour of North America over a STONE overweight.
It has caused friction at the club and president Florentino Perez, who hailed Hazard as the player to solve all of Real Madrid’s problems during his unveiling, has distanced himself from playing a part in his acquisition.
Instead, it is reported, sources have said Perez now has no confidence in Hazard and signed him only at the request of Zidane.
Hazard, who smashed the club’s transfer record after sealing a £150million move earlier this summer, will have to bear much of the brunt of the attacking burden at the Bernabeu this season.
With Bale’s future still in limbo and Marco Asensio set to be sidelined all season after rupturing his ACL, Zidane needs Hazard to fire if Los Blancos are to make the marked improvement needed this term.
This is not the first time the former Chelsea man has struggled with his weight going into the new season. Speaking last summer to Belgian newspaper HLN, he admitted a disastrous start to the 2015-2016 campaign.
‘I have had one bad year — the last six months under Mourinho and it was partially my own doing. After winning the title, we asked Mourinho for extra holidays.
‘I was totally out of shape at the start of the season, I remembered that lesson this summer  — four weeks after the World Cup, I was back in training at Chelsea.
‘The last season under Mourinho was not pleasant any more, we didn’t win, we got into a routine, training without having fun, it was better for all parties it ended.’