MADRID (AP) - Eden Hazard scored his first goal in more than a year for Real Madrid to lead his team to a 4-1 win over Huesca in the Spanish league on Saturday.
Hazard took advantage of his first start of the season by blasting home a strike to set Madrid on its way to ending a two-game home losing streak.
Karim Benzema scored two more for Madrid and set up another goal.
Ravaged by a series of injuries, including a foot fracture, Hazard has struggled since making his club-record 100 million euros (then $113 million) move from Chelsea in 2019. His only previous goal for Zinedine Zidane’s side was on Oct. 5, 2019.
“It was a good goal. I’m happy for the team and for myself,” Hazard said. “When you score you get extra confidence. I’m tired, I want to play more games. My peak fitness will come with the matches and we’ve got another one in a few days. We need to keep training and be ready.”
The Belgium forward broke his scoring drought in the 40th minute when he received the ball, spun to fend off a defender, and unleashed a left-footed shot from outside the area that swerved into the corner of the net.
“I am happy for Hazard,” Zidane said. “Little by little he needs to get back into the team. We know the talent he has. He scored a good goal and it was just what we needed in the first half.”
Hazard had missed the first seven games of the campaign before playing his first minutes since July on Tuesday as a late substitute in a 2-2 draw at Borussia Monchengladbach in the Champions League.
Benzema doubled the lead before halftime when he controlled Lucas Vázquez’s cross to the far post and fired past goalkeeper Andrés Fernández. The French striker found Federico Valverde to put the result beyond doubt in the 54th.
David Ferreiro scored Huesca’s goal in the 74th before Benzema rounded off the victory with a header.
Madrid moved to the top of the standings with 16 points. Real Sociedad, Atletico Madrid and Cádiz are two points behind.
Newly promoted Huesca remained winless since its return to the top flight.
Madrid hosts Inter Milan on Tuesday in the Champions League. The 13-time European champion is seeking a win after a loss and draw in its first two group games.
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