Eden Hazard presentation: Real Madrid welcome new star
Real Madrid: Eden Hazard presented
To finish off, here's that selfie Hazard took while be paraded around the pitch...but in video form.
Thank you so much to everyone who joined us for the presentation, keepy uppies and press conference. We're going to wrap things up now but just a reminder to anyone who is joining us late...
EDEN HAZARD IS A REAL MADRID PLAYER
That old chestnut of a question just had to pop out: LaLiga or Premier League?
"They're different, I don't think one is better than the other."
Hazard explains that having his family here has helped the nerves and talks about the renewed desire at Madrid after a poor season:
"The hunger to win trophies is greater and I hope I can help."
"I'm not here to speak about transfers. I came to play with the best; new players will join, but I don't sign them. That's not my role."
With the media advised of time running out, Eden is asked about potential new faces that could come in after him, specifically Mbappé and Pogba...
Asked about reaching his peak:
"There is always room for improvement, I'm sure. Being here will help me do that."
"I can bring experience, goals and assists, and I hope to be a [another] of the leaders."
Potential link-up relationship with Benzema:
"I played against him when he was at Lyon. His last nine years with Madrid have been incredible, I think he's the world's best striker. Playing and training with him will make me better and I'm confident we'll have a good understanding."
Asked about whether or not it was easier to win the Ballon d'Or playing for Madrid:
"It's easier, but it's not my main objective, that is to win with the club...although it's in the back of my head."
Nice line, Eden: "Galáctico? No, I'm not a Galáctico...not yet anyway."
"Possibly one day I'd like to be considered a Galáctico but right now I am Eden Hazard."
"It's incredible that 50,000 fans came to see me today. I really want to put the Madrid shirt on as soon as possible and play."
Hazard says he met Florentino at a prize ceremony in London who told him it was a good time to come: "It was nice to hear that from the president"
"I aim to be the best player in the world's best team. I had a lot of success at Chelsea and I want to win lots in Madrid. This is a new challenge and I want to succeed."
Apparently Courtois advised him to take the opportunity if Madrid came calling. "Having a friend here is important, I hope to win things together."
"The club and fans are demanding, they want to win everything. I'll work as hard as possible, that's most important, to prove myself. I hope Madrid fans enjoy what they see."
Eden says he was in touch with Modric through Kovacic asking if he could have the number 10 shirt. "We had a laugh, but the number is not important," he joked.
"After last year's World Cup I believe there was contact with Madrid. I chose to stay at Chelsea and it was a good decision. We won the Europa League and it is the right time for the move."
"I'm only 28 and 27-33 are the best years for a footballer. There have been many rumours, but I enjoyed my spells at Lille and Chelsea. Now I am at the best club in the world."
Now asked about taking penalty responsibilty...
"There are a number of big players here, and I'm the new lad. The captain is good at taking penalties, but I'm happy to take them if asked" he says with a wry smile
Hazard: "I want to enjoy my time here...and win the maximum possible with Madrid"
"Hopefully I can write a new page in Real Madrid hostory."
Next up, thoughts on the emotions his mother and family are going through... He confirms it's an emotional time, and that he can't wait for the season to start
“The position I play is not for me. The coach will decide that, but I always like to play on the left, or as number 10. If I have to play in another position I will do it, of course.”
In answer to the first question Hazard repeats his dream was to play for Madrid.
Emilio Butragueño introduces proceedings. Now it's over to the press...
In case you're wondering, I'm just filling some time while we await the press conference featu9ring Madrid's latest Galáctico. But it's time...
It's love at first sight!
A nice message from his Belgian teammate. Formerly of Everton and Man Utd, Fellaini is now at Shandong Luneng.
Interesting point (as is often the case) from Dermot here. Certainly some mixed views on the chants, some saying direspectful, others suggesting some fans taking a rare opportunity to make a point directly to the president.
Hazard badge kissing
I'll be staying right here to bring you all the key messages...
Well, that was fun. And it's not over yet. The press room is filling up as we await a Q&A with the player
Here's that moment when Eden Hazard talks directly to the supporters who turned out in force tonight.
Ya se retira Hazard. En breves comparecerá ante los medios.
Hazard coge el micrófono: "Muchas gracias a todos. ¡Hala Madrid!".
OK. Time for him to speak. "Gracias a todos ¡Hala Madrid!" he chants to the fans, thankful that the club motto is brief
The ball kicking is back on as he looks to complete a full lap. He'll definitely enjoy his holiday after this. I'm tired just watching
Se le acumula el trabajo a Hazard, que no da abasto para lanzar balones a la afición.
Phew! He says, as an official breaks up the process. Oh wait! He has to take a penalty!
(At least he scores)
Sensible lad. He's started throwing some balls into the stand...
Se le ve feliz al chico.
Did Hazard just pull his hamstring kicking ball number 427? No, he's ok ;-)
Watch out Eden: that looks very tiring. Just what you need after a long season for club and country...
Hazard inmortaliza un breve momento de su presentación.
OK, with most new signing the kicking-balls-into-the-crowd process doesn't take very long. Having fans all round the stadium, and balls placed every couple of metres apart means this is going to take a while...
Y, como no podía ser de otra forma, Hazard besa el escudo de su nuevo equipo.
Selfie time! Eden is handed a mobile and takes a pic with the fans behind him. Then a huge cheer goes up as he kisses the badge.
La afición aclama a Hazard, que saluda sonriente a la grada del Bernabéu.
Now, as is customary, he is walking around the pitch kicking balls into the crowd. Oops, someone almost fell over the seat in front trying to grab one. Call H&S
While the crowd sing, the player does his ball skills with ease. Then smiles at the mass of clicking cameras and gives them the thumbs up.
Now Eden steps out from the tunnel, all in white, holding the white and gold ball mentioned earlier. Cue the club anthem, which is being belted out...
The man on the loudspeaker is trying to whip the 50 or so thousand in here up into a further frenzy, getting them to chant out their new hero's name (as they do at the start of every game and for goals)
Family Hazard out on the pitch soaking up the atmosphere. The fans know it's almost time...
Roberto Carlos filling in some time while Eden gets his suit off, and the famous kit on
His place is already marked out, right next to Lucas Vázquez
Hazard steps into the home dressing room and starts to loosen his tie. That's the moment the cameraman realises he should possibly stop filming.
Here he comes folks, still in that sharp suit. He's got a confident swagger about him, but there's a hint of 'Oh my God. I'm here!' about his smile
"I'm looking forward to winning lots with Madrid" - always a popular line
Hazard: "It has been a dream since I was young to play for Real Madrid, and today I am here"
Hazard thanks the president and then switches to French, saying his Spanish is not yet up to scratch
Pérez: "I have wanted to say these words for a long time, Eden Hazard is a Real Madrid player!"
"Welcome to the Real Madrid family"...and now, up steps a confident looking Hazard
Pérez calls Eden "one of the best in the world..." and says he is joining a fabulous squad.
"We also want to thank our friends Chelsea who have allowed this dream to be fulfilled."
As the president started his speech there were a number of whistles from the crowd outside.
A big welcome from Florentino, to Hazard, his family, the Real Madrid family, and the fans...
Now it's time for the president to speak...
Lille, Chelsea, Belgium, and soon, Real Madrid. This player is loved by his own supporters, and admired by opposition fans.
Next to Eden in the front row are his proud parents and brothers. They'll quickly learn that the Spanish capital is a very nice place to visit.
Florentino watching these clips thinking, 'We got this guy rather cheap!"'
Is this whetting the appetite of you Madridistas out there???
Hazard and Florentino have taken their seats (as hopefully you can see in our live video above) and we're enjoying clips of the man doing his thing
Right, it's time!
Other key members of Zidane's new look team may well be watching tonight's presentation with interest. As may Gareth Bale who has been tweeting in the last few minutes
Interestingly, no number on the shirt...
The snappers are also getting their fill of pictures as Eden holds up the white shirt with his name on the back (and a wall covered in European Cups, just to remind him, and everyone of the status of this club)
Although you can't see it, Hazard and Florentino Pérez have been putting their scribbles onto the important pieces of paper, and shaking hands enthusiastically. We'll have plenty of those pics coming up...
There's a Mexican wave currently going around the stadium as the crowd hit close to fever pitch. Wait till the man himself arrives...
Before the ball skills and waves to the masses, Hazard was just spotted lining up his silver tie. Fully suited and booted for the formal part of the occasion.
You may have spotted former player Álvaro Arbeloa getting interviewed a few moments ago. He reiterated the mood around here: "There are lots of people looking forward to seeing Eden Hazard dressed in white"
Real Madrid have admitted to being keen admirers of the Belgian for some time and, had circumstances been different, he could have been playing here long before now. In saying that, at the age of 28, he is arriving at a similar time to some other big names. Check this list out:
Real Madrid's 'Galácticos' and the age they arrived
We've all seen lavish presentations of players in the past, and the subsequent performances have disappointed (you can all think of your own examples) but few believe that will happen with Hazard. At times he was the one dragging Chelsea along almost single-handedly.
If you've not already, make sure to click on the video above, which will take you to the presentation room. The chat will be in Spanish but I'll keep you across the main points.
I'll update the images shortly but keep your eyes open for the special ball that Eden will get to play with. In line with the new branding, it's half white/half gold, with the Real Madrid branding. There truly is a feeling that this Galáctico can provide the golden touch. Ballon dÓr 2020, anyone?
The Bernabéu has a lovely buzz about it. The top sections of the stadium have been closed off which means that the rest is tightly packed and the positive vibe is filtering around. A nice 27 degrees helps the happiness.
We're just five minutes away from the expected start time of this presentation, but from what I can see, there are still people trying to get in. Fortunately, this is Spain, so no one really expects us to start on time...
There will be right backs all over LaLiga and beyond looking forward to their new challenge.
Most people are expecting to see the 28-year old in his starting position wide on the left. He will though - much like Cristiano before him - burst in centrally to create danger. This could open up plenty of space for the likes of Mendy or Marcelo to overlap.
When you join an elite club, there's more to it than just writing your name and waving to the crowd. Early today there was likely some touching of toes and, ahem, coughing on request. No reports of any problems, you'll be glad to hear.
Note: I see there are people joining us from all round the globe for this event. We'd love to hear your comments so please use the appropriately named 'COMMENT' button above to leave some thoughts...
Talking of Mendy, this is a lovely little piece giving his story. Go on, give it a read, we've still got 20 minutes till Hazard signs in
Of course, Eden joins a number of new faces for the rebuild under Zidane. Yesterday was the turn of young striker Luka Jovic to be introduced. It went rather well, although that's always likely to happen if you say you used to sleep in a Real Madrid shirt!
The excitement around the arrival of the man who has been wowing Premier League crowds for seven years is clear. Queues have been forming around the Bernabéu all afternoon
Last season was very disappointing for Los Blancos, both on the pitch in terms of results, and in the stands with attendances being impacted. This summer's investment is seen as a way to bring return them to their former selves.
The club have been encouraging fans of all ages to fill the stadium tonight and give the Belgian winger a taste of what he can expect in the coming season.
Hello and a very warm welcome to you from Madrid. It's a lovely balmy evening in the Spanish capital, and inside the Santiago Bernabéu things are hotting up nicely as the fans prepare to meet their Real Madrid's newest Galáctico: Eden Hazard.