Real Madrid reappoint Zidane as manager

By Soccer Blog | Mar 12, 2019

Barely ten months after leaving the club, Zinedine Zidane has returned to the Bernabeu to take charge of Real Madrid for the second time. In his first tenure at Real, the 46 year old won three back to back Champions League titles, an unprecedented feat in the modern CL era. Los Blancos’ title defence however ended at the Round of 16 stage this season, with Ajax producing a stunning 4-1 win in the Spanish capital– a defeat that effectively lead to Santiago Solari’s exit. The league victory at Valladolid over the weekend was the Argentine’s last game in charge of the club.

Zidane is the third manager Real have used this season after Julen Lopetegui and Solari. The Frenchman has asked for greater control over transfer dealings and has reportedly lined up the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante as potential targets, with Real ready to give him a £300m war chest. Prior to Zidane’s appointment, there were rumours circulating about a potential return for Jose Mourinho, but they remained just that- rumours.

This is also effectively another chance for the likes of Isco and Marcelo to re-establish themselves at the Bernabeu after having been frozen out under Solari. What it means for the futures of James and Gareth Bale, especially the former, remains to be seen. Zidane preferred James to Isco and this might mean that the Colombian continues to stay at Munich instead of returning to Spain.

In a way, this is also Zidane putting his managerial acumen on the line- there were several who argued that Ronaldo was the reason for Real’s troika of CL trophies under the Frenchman. With Ronaldo having departed and successive managers having struggled to fill the void left by him, it will be interesting to see if Zidane can replicate the success of previous seasons.

Zidane’s first spell at Real Madrid as coach (January 2016 to May 2018)

Games played 149- W105, D28, L16 (Goals scored 398, Goals conceded 163)

Trophies won (8): 3 Champions League titles, 2 Super Cup titles, 2 Club World Cup titles, 1 Supercopa Espana

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