• Premier League

Mourinho refuses Hazard apology

ESPN staff
November 8, 2013
Mourinho's changes paid off against Schalke

Jose Mourinho has said he did not accept Eden Hazard's apology for missing training after losing his passport but insists the Belgian is a 'good kid' who has learnt his lesson.

Hazard took absence without leave to watch former club Lille play last Sunday but then missed a club training session after losing his passport, which prompted Mourinho to drop the attacker for the midweek Champions League clash against Schalke.

Mourinho admits it was a risky strategy to drop the Belgian but has drawn a line under the incident ahead of Chelsea's clash with West Brom on Saturday.

He said: "It was a simple story. He went to a foreign country when he shouldn't have and then lost his passport which meant he couldn't get back for training. That was unacceptable but it's over.

"I have to assume was a bit of a risk not to select him for the last match, in pure football terms, because he could've helped us win an important match. But sometimes as a manager you have to take risks if I feel consequences for the group very important and this as important decision. Was a normal decision but no more consequences. Consequence was not to play, which is worst thing you can to do a play. Case over - he's a very good kid.

"I think he reacted well because he apologised to me and to the club. Of course the apology was not accepted because was it something I couldn't accept. But it's over. Now it's something that doesn't exist any more. He's selected and ready to play. I believe he has appetite to play because he loves to play and I didn't allow him to play, happy he's back.

"He knows everybody was clear and right that he made a mistake. So it's not a big story. Every player knows me and knows my reaction, my decision. The group is more important than any player. The group principles are more important than any result. Every player knew I wouldn't select him but also knows that it's over."

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