The respected French newspaper L’Equipe’s front page on Wednesday morning suggests a major managerial change is about to take place at Real Madrid.
The newspaper, which has close ties with French superstar Zinedine Zidane, reports that Zuzu will replace Rafael Benitez imminently as Real Madrid manager.
According to L’Equipe, Zidane is “at the gates of the great Real Madrid” with Rafa Benitez now one poor result away from the sack.
Benitez has now lost the confidence of the Real Madrid hierarchy and appointing Zidane as coach of the first team has been a long term dream of president Florentino Perez.
Rumours were rife after the 4-0 El Clasico defeat to Barcelona in November that Benitez would be on his way but Perez came out with a public vote of confidence.
Since then, Real have continued to be rocked by scandal, most notably with Karim Benzema’s involvement in Mathieu Valbuena’s sextape scandal and their exit from the Copa del Rey due to playing an ineligible player against Cadiz.
On the pitch, Benitez seemed to have rightened the ship after the Clasico disaster as The Whites ran off five successive wins including an 8-0 shellacking of Malmo in the Champions League. But, the 1-0 loss at Villarreal this past Sunday brought back out the anti-Benitez supports as it appears that the former Liverpool managers days in the Spanish capital are numbered.
Real Madrid have two La Liga games before the turn of the year. At home to Rayo Vallecano and Real Sociedad. The match with Rayo Vallecano this Sunday afternoon precedes a 10-day break over Christmas and presents a perfect opportunity for Perez to make a managerial change.
So sure are L’Equipe that Zidane will take over at Real Madrid that they have a supplementary article on his coaching style.
Zidane is currently in charge of the Real Madrid Castilla side, where he plays an attacking style, similar to his playing days.
The 1998 French World Cup winner recently said:
“As a footballer, I liked to play and, as a coach, I want my team to play ball.”