Eden Hazard: Real Madrid forward set to miss first leg vs Man City in Champions League last 16

Eden Hazard is set to miss the first leg of Real Madrid’s Champions League last-16 tie against Manchester City due to an ankle injury.

The 29-year-old limped off during Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Levante in La Liga, which was only his second match since returning from an ankle injury, which had kept him out of action for almost three months.

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Real Madrid assessed the injury overnight and confirmed on Sunday that Hazard has suffered a fracture to his right distal fibula, however they are unable to put a time frame on his period of recovery.

A club statement said: “Following the tests carried out today on our player, Eden Hazard, by the Real Madrid medical department, he has been diagnosed with a fracture to his right distal fibula. His recovery will continue to be assessed.”

Real Madrid’s next two games are at home to Manchester City in the Champions League on February 26 followed by El Clasico against Barcelona at the Bernabeu on March 1.

Real’s first defeat in the league since October saw them fall to second place in La Liga on 53 points after 25 games.

Barcelona replaced them at the top of the table on 55 points after hammering Eibar 5-0 earlier in the day, thanks to four goals from Lionel Messi.

Pep: Laporte can play 90 vs Real

Pep Guardiola is confident Aymeric Laporte is ready to play 90 minutes against Real Madrid on Wednesday night despite the defender asking to be substituted during Saturday’s 1-0 win at Leicester.

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Laporte was replaced by Nicolas Otamendi after 57 minutes of Saturday’s match, his third appearance since his return from a long lay-off with a knee injury.

Guardiola said there was no fresh injury problem for the Frenchman, but the pace of Leicester’s attack was a tough test for a player still rediscovering his rhythm.

“He asked me to be subbed,” Guardiola said. “He’s not injured. We cannot forget he has been out for four or five months injured. They run a lot, (Jamie) Vardy, Kelechi (Iheanacho), (Harvey) Barnes, they are all so fast.

“It was quite different against West Ham (on Wednesday) where they was only one striker so it was easier to control, but he’s OK.”

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