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Zinedine Zidane leaves Real Madrid

Coach’s second spell in charge of the club he once played for has come to an end

Alex Pattle
Thursday 27 May 2021 11:39 BST
Zinedine Zidane has left Real Madrid for the third time
Zinedine Zidane has left Real Madrid for the third time (AFP via Getty Images)

Zinedine Zidane has left his role as Real Madrid coach.

Reports emerged on Wednesday night that the former club midfielder had decided to leave Real, and it has now been confirmed that Zidane’s second spell in charge has come to an end following a season in which the team went without a major trophy.

Real were La Liga runners-up to rivals Atletico Madrid, exited the Champions League with a semi-final defeat by Chelsea, and watched Barcelona lift the Copa del Rey.

A statement released by Real Madrid on Thursday morning read: “Zinedine Zidane has decided to end his current stage as coach of our club.

“It is now time to respect his decision and show him our appreciation for his professionalism, dedication and passion in all these years, and for what his figure represents for Real Madrid.

“Zidane is one of the great myths of Real Madrid and his legend goes beyond what he has been as a coach and player of our club.

“He knows that he is at the heart of Real Madrid and that Real Madrid is and will always be his home.”

Zidane, who spent five years in Real’s midfield from 2001 until his playing career ended in 2006, managed the club from 2016 to 2018 before rejoining Los Blancos in 2019.

In his first stint as Real coach, Zidane led the team to one La Liga trophy and three consecutive Champions League titles – as the club became the first in history to win the competition twice in a row.

Zidane’s second spell saw the former France international, 48, add another La Liga title last season.

Former Juventus coach Max Allegri has emerged as the favourite to replace Zidane, though Antonio Conte left Inter Milan by mutual consent on Wednesday evening – three weeks after guiding the Italian side to their first Serie A trophy in 11 years – and has also been linked to the Real job.

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