Jose Mourinho admits he dropped Eden Hazard for the Champions League tie with Schalke due to the Belgian star accidentally missing a training session.
Hazard’s trip to watch former Lille teammates in their 2-0 win over Monaco turned into a nightmare after he failed to catch the Eurostar back to London. As reported by Sami Mokbel of the Daily Mail, Mourinho recognises the mistake and is ready to move on:
He missed training on Monday. He forgot the time? That's the end of story. He's a kid.
Kids make mistakes and fathers have to be clever in the way they educate their sons. He didn't play. He wanted to play.
He was sad because he didn't play. We won without him. On Saturday, he is back. So, end of story.
Chelsea barely missed the 22-year-old, who was forced to watch as his colleagues tore through Schalke, 3-0, at Stamford Bridge.
Despite a strong start from the Bundesliga side and a sloppy beginning for the hosts, Samuel Eto’o’s decision to chase down Timo Hildebrand saw the dawdling goalkeeper wallop the ball off the Cameroonian’s leg and into the net.
Eto’o then added a second before Demba Ba grabbed his first goal of the season with a neat turn and finish as the match came to a close.
Mourinho also took the decision to drop Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard and David Luiz after the Blues’ 2-0 Premier League defeat to Newcastle.
Despite losing to Basel in their first European fixture of the campaign, Chelsea are three points clear at the top of the group after a victory over Steaua Bucharest and taking six points from the two games with Schalke.
Mourinho’s men need just one point from their upcoming trip to Basel but will face fierce examination at St. Jakob-Park.
Chelsea fans can now look forward to a Premier League tie with West Brom, a match Hazard will be available for.
The exciting winger will want to extend his record of four goals and one assist this season, as recorded by WhoScored, as the West Londoners look to recover from their recent mishap against Alan Pardew’s struggling team.
Hazard will look to make an immediate impression against the Baggies in order to reward Mourinho's renewed faith, who continues favouring the youngster in the majority of his starting line-ups.