25 Jan 2013

Plenty of backing for Eden Hazard

11:30 am on 25 January 2013

Players and ex-professionals have spoken out in support of Eden Hazard after the Chelsea winger was sent off for kicking a ball boy in an English League Cup game at Swansea City.

Hazard was shown a straight red card by referee Chris Foy in the 80th minute of yesterday's semi-final second leg after attempting to kick the ball from beneath a ball boy who was lying on top of it, apparently deliberately.

The 17-year-old boy is the son of Swansea director Martin Morgan and on his Twitter account written before the game, the boy said he would try to waste time in a bid to help the home side protect their 2-0 aggregate lead.

The BBC commentator and former Chelsea player Pat Nevin is disappointed that Hazard is being made the only villain here, saying the ballboy deliberately rolled on top of the ball and he would've done the same thing.

The Wigan manager Roberto Martinez says this sort of things has been happening for quite a while, and the role of the ballboy needs to be addressed.

Martinez says there's been a number of incidents at grounds around the country where over-enthusiastic ballboys have been obstructive and he's sure the authorities will look into it.

Swansea will face fourth-tier Bradford City in the tournament final on February 24th.