Who should Real Madrid target as their new manager?
Four choices presented…
When Zinedine Zidane called a press-conference five days after winning his third consecutive Champions League title the rumours started to swirl.
‘Zizou’ had just become the joint most successful manager in Champions League history. Was it going to be a contract extension as they looked to topple Barcelona once more?
But once he had begun to speak it was clear this was a goodbye.
The Frenchman had become a naturalised ‘Madridista’ in his sixteen year affiliation with the club. As a player he won Europe’s elite competition with Real in 2002 as well as the La Liga title a year later.
However the attention has turned to his successor and the Coral News Team examines who could be next man through the Santiago Bernabeu’s revolving doors.
Arsene Wenger has openly admitted he has turned down the Spanish giants on multiple occasions. He vowed he would stay loyal to Arsenal. The team he helped to transform into a European super-club.
Wenger would be at the top of every clubs shopping list if this was the noughties.
However, there are some doubts that the 68-year-old can still manage at the pinnacle of the game.
He left Arsenal at the end of last season after a 22-year-run which took in an unbeaten Premier League season and a string of FA Cups to name a few.
But this could be the time to step forward and claim that elusive Champions League his personal trophy-haul is missing.
Perhaps managing a team like Madrid would suit Wenger. He likes his players to play expressive and off-the-cuff football.
This is exactly what Real are famed for. Wenger’s most successful period came when he had a strong defensive unit he didn’t need to tinker with.
Madrid have that in place. So if Wenger can keep the big egos happy it might not be so inconceivable.
Every vacancy needs to have a club legend option. It would keep the fans in touch with the team. A youth graduate that knows what it means to play for the club.
Guti is no different. He was a constant in the Galactico era, donning the famous Los Blancos shirt from 1995-2010.
He went on to play a single season for Besiktas before retiring and has spent the last two years honing his coaching skills in Real Madrid’s youth set-up.
It would buck the trend of what the club have been built on in the last 20 years. Signing star-names in their prime. But it worked with Zidane so why not Guti?
Real Murcia president Victor Galvez was trying to negotiate a deal to bring Guti to the club but this has stalled.
He admitted that the vacant manager’s position at the Bernabeu could be his.
Guti will get the respect of the players almost immediately.
At 1/2 he’s currently the odds-on favourite and would nurture Madrid’s distinct style of play.
There’s a lot of moving parts that need to fit into place if this is to come to fruition.
Despite winning the Premier League title in 2016-17, Conte’s Chelsea career looked unstable at best for much of last season.
The FA Cup win was a highlight in a below-par season as speculation surrounding his future in West London has raged on.
As things stand Conte is still the Chelsea manager. However, if the Blues can successfully negotiate a package for Maurizio Sarri then Conte will be freed.
It’s thought Madrid favour a man who can perfectly balance everything. The pressure, the demanding fan-base and the world-famous playing squad need to all be aligned.
The former Italy manager has had a similar experience in Serie A with Juventus and now has experience in winning major trophies abroad.
It would represent a sound choice by Florentino Perez. And with speculation around some of the club’s biggest stars, it could be an appointment that keeps this powerhouse charging on.
The first name that came to the majority of people’s mind after Zidane’s decision was Mauricio Pochettino.
It was definitely the first one that came to president Florentino Perez. The newspapers in Spain have labelled Pochettino ‘el elegido’ or the ‘chosen one’.
Spurs retorted by dismissing a release clause in a contract he signed days before.
It will certainly be the trickiest to make happen. But Madrid have always backed themselves in the transfer market.
Initiating a manager merry-go-round will be no different.
The former Espanyol manager has vowed to never fill the dugouts at either Barcelona or Arsenal in his career but the Madrid job is difficult to turn down.
The Argentine was very cryptic in his press conferences eluding to a little disharmony between himself and chairman Daniel Levy.
Levy has always been a hard taskmaster and doesn’t back down from heated negotiations.
If Madrid want their man then they better get set for a long, hot summer.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing