Zinedine Zidane steps down as Real Madrid Coach

French coach Zinedine “Zizou” Zidane has stepped down from his role as coach for Spanish La Liga giants Real Madrid despite winning a record 3rd successive European Champions League title with the club last week.

Zidane who took over as coach for the Real Madrid senior team in 2016 from Rafa Benitez has won 6 major trophies since becoming manager. He announced his decision on Thursday morning flanked by Real president Florentino Pérez.

Zidane who joined Los Blancos as a player in 2001 said, “I will be close to this club for the rest of my life. I want to thank the fans, who always supported me both as a coach and a player. There were tough moments during the season and although I was sometimes whistled at, I want to thank the fans.

Pérez added that the decision had come as a surprise with Zidane only informing him of his intentions just the day before the press conference.

“It is a sad day for me and will be for the fans, the players and everyone at the club,” said Perez. “I wanted him to be next to me forever. But I know it is his final decision.

“I would have liked to convince him to stay on but I know what he is like.”

Zidane is unlikely to be the only one leaving the Bernabeu with doubts cast over the futures of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale at the club.

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