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Zinedine Zidane steps down as Real Madrid coach

01 June, 2018, 17:42 | Author: Candice Daniels
  • Barcelona news Lionel Messi Real Madrid Cristiano Ronaldo

The 3-1 victory over Liverpool in Kiev on Saturday was the pinnacle of a coaching career after his reign as a player with Real Madrid which peaked when he scored the winning goal in the 2002 Champions League final against Bayer Leverkusen in Glasgow.

On Thursday, the Frenchman announced his decision to leave the Spanish giants after just two-and-a-half seasons and just five days after becoming the first manager in history to win three consecutive Champions Leagues.

Real's LaLiga struggles, finishing third and 17 points behind fierce rivals Barcelona, no doubt factored in World Cup victor Zidane's decision.

Following the shock announcement, attention swiftly turned to who would be the man charged with leading the European champions next season as they look to wrestle back domestic dominance.

'I suppose the president knew [Zidane was leaving] before today, so he has for sure been getting in touch with possible coaches and getting their opinion of coming to Real Madrid'.

Rodriguez left Real Madrid for Bayern Munich 12 months ago and blossomed as the club eased to the Bundesliga title.

Zidane was understood to be under contract at Madrid until 2020.

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"Pochettino was quoted by the Spanish press as having said: "When Real Madrid call you, you have to listen". It's time for a change. After three years, it's the right decision.

It ended well for me when I was a player and it's ended well for me as a manager.

"I don't think it was fair".

"But I also admire how he was always a very transparent person, a coach that regardless of what he had to say to a player, he said it up front. I thank him for the work he has done". Former Arsenal manager Wenger was quickly placed upon the early favourites to take over.

Resolving the futures of Gareth Bale and star striker Cristiano Ronaldo will be priorities for the new boss.

Vacancies at top European clubs are now limited, but the fallout from this summer's World Cup in Russian Federation might present a first global challenge to Zidane, who stepped up from managing the "Castilla" B team to replace Rafael Benitez in January 2016.

The 45-year-old won nine trophies following his appointment in 2016 and seven-time MotoGP champion Rossi was among those surprised by Zidane's exit. "I'm not here to talk about the future of this team". "I'm not looking for another team", Zidane said.

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