Zinedine Zidane has resigned as Real Madrid coach, the club confirmed, saying it’s ‘time to respect his decision,’ reports Reuters.
The Frenchman’s second spell in charge was far less fruitful than his first, failing to win any trophy.
Having lost to Chelsea in the Champions League semifinals, and to Atlético Madrid in the final stretch of the race for the Spanish league championship, it was the first time in 11 seasons Real Madrid came up empty.
It was a far cry from Zidane’s first three seasons at Real when he guided the club to a hat-trick of Champions League crowns, a La Liga title and two Club World Cups.
“Zidane is one of the greats of Real Madrid and his legend goes beyond what he has been as a coach and player for our club,” the club said in a statement. “He knows that he is at the heart of Real Madrid and that Real Madrid is and will always be his home.”
The Spanish giants are yet to announce a new coach. Massimiliano Allegri is the early favourite, but he will reportedly return to Juventus, where he won five consecutive Italian league titles.
Antonio Conte is also a target after he left Italian champions Inter Milan on Wednesday, while former club striker Raul Gonzalez has also been linked with the post.
Meanwhile, Paris Saint-Germain has moved quickly to pour cold water over Mauricio Pochettino’s potential return to Tottenham.
PSG have made it clear that they are planning ahead for the future with Mauricio Pochettino as boss. Reports emerged yesterday that the Argentine was in talks with Tottenham over a sensational return to north London just six months into his tenure at the Parc des Princes.
Pochettino arrived back at his former club PSG in the New Year but failed to pip Lille to the Ligue 1 title on the final day of the season.
PSG were also beaten in the semifinals of the Champions League by Manchester City but did win one trophy in the form of the Coupe de la Ligue.
Next year, that will simply not be deemed good enough but despite their shortcomings, PSG expects Pochettino to continue building on what he started in Paris.
Yet privately, he is believed to be in talks with Daniel Levy over the prospect of a return to Tottenham who are on the lookout for a new manager.