Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane made the surprise announcement quit as Real Madrid coach on Thursday, less than a week after leading the team to its third straight Champions League title, saying the club needed a change in command.
The 45-year-old Zidane, who was coach for two and half seasons, said he felt it was the right moment — for him and for the team — to make the move.
“I think it’s the moment, both for me, the team and the club (to step down). It’s a strange moment to do so, I know, but an important one too. I had to do this for everyone,” he said.
Zidane won nine titles as Madrid coach, including the three Champions League titles, one Spanish league title, one Spanish Super Cup, two UEFA Super Cups and two Club World Cups.
The Frenchman clearly feels that after such a successful period at the Bernabeu the only way forward for the club to continue its success is via a change at the top.
Zidane replaced Rafa Benitez after a stint with Madrid’s “B” team. He had been an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti when Madrid won the Champions League in 2014.
As a player, Zidane was in two consecutive Champions League finals with Juventus, losing both times, including to Madrid in 1998.
He finally won the European title as a Madrid player in 2002, scoring an amazing volley in the final against Bayer Leverkusen.
With France, he won the 1998 World Cup. In the 2006 final, he was sent off for headbutting Italy defender Marco Materazzi.
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