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Jason Demetriou: Captaining Cyprus on international duty, Eden Hazard's shirt and returning to action for Blues

11 October 2017

Jason Demetriou returned home following international duty with Cyprus on Wednesday having captained his country in their recent two outings.

The right-back earned the honour of leading out his national side against Greece on Saturday, a game they lost 2-1, and then in Brussels on Tuesday night as Belgium ran out 4-0 winners.

And Demetriou even bagged himself Eden Hazard’s shirt, after the Belgian scored a brace.

Demetriou said it was a great honour to captain Cyprus on both occasions.

“That was the first time I’ve been captain. I was made aware the day before by the manager that, because I had the most caps, I would be captain.

“I was quietly buzzing to be honest because it’s quite a big thing.

“You don’t realise it until on the day when you get the armband and it was quite surreal really.

“It was a proud moment for me and my family. I don’t think I realised how big it was, so it was a good couple of games.”

Belgium qualified for the FIFA World Cup Finals, and rounded off qualification thanks to a brace from Hazard, one from his brother Thorgan and another from Romelu Lukaku.

“It’s amazing to see how good they are,” Demetriou added.

“You can see how they’re at the top because they’re that bit faster, quicker, stronger and it’s great to experience playing against them. I don’t think I would like to play against them every week!

“I managed to take Hazard’s shirt. I didn’t offer him mine because I know it would probably be put in the bin, but that was nice to come away with from the game.”

Demetriou lined up in a wing back role, which he has done before for club and country, and says he’s now fully focussed in helping Blues get back to winning ways on Saturday at Wigan Athletic.

“When we play against bigger teams we try and pack out the midfield and the thought is to try and be more defensive.

“I’ve played it [wing back] before so I don’t mind it. The manager says you have to look at what you’re playing against and realise they’re going to have a lot of possession and a lot of attacks.

“I’ve played there a few times and I don’t mind it there.”

He added: “I’ll be making myself available for Saturday. I’ll probably have a warm down tomorrow and then train Friday and I’ll be looking to hit the ground running where I left the squad because obviously things didn’t work out for us on Saturday against Doncaster.

“We’ll be looking to respond well to the defeat like we were showed a number of times last season.”


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