Tuesday, March 12,2019
ZINEDINE ZIDANE left Real Madrid last summer because he could see the club’s struggles coming.
Zinedine Zidane on Real Madrid return: I’m happy to be home
That is the opinion of Craig Burley, the former Chelsea midfielder.
Zidane was confirmed as Madrid manager on Monday for the second time, just eight months after he walked out on the club.
The Frenchman resigned days after winning the Champions League final against Liverpool in May, citing the need for a rest as his reason for leaving despite his success at the Bernabeu.
But on Monday it was confirmed that he was back as head coach, replacing Santiago Solari, who himself had lasted just four months in charge.
Zidane becomes Madrid’s third manager this season, after Julen Lopetegui’s ill-fated term as boss lasted just 14 games at the helm.
Speaking on ESPN FC, Burley suggested that Zidane had predicted the team’s demise before he left last summer, and that was the real reason as to why he left.
“Let’s be honest, he could probably smell what was coming around the corner,” he said.
“He probably looked at it and thought ‘well I need this, I need this, and if I don’t get it maybe it’s best I step aside’.
“If he’s really clever he maybe could have foreseen that it was going to be a struggle, and that down the line he might have the opportunity.
“He comes back in now with a big job on his hands but without any real pressure between now and the end of the season.”
Los Blancos are currently third in La Liga, five points behind rivals Atletico and 12 behind leaders Barcelona.
And Burley believes Zidane has a real job on his hands to resurrect the team, and recreate his past glories with the club.
He’s now going to have to take a real hard look at it and say ‘yeah, him, him, him and him they all need to go’,” he continued.
“They were successful before, but that was then and this is now.
“He’s now taking over an embattled squad, he has got a lot to sort out between now and the summer transfer window.”