Rafael Benitez has been given the sack as head coach of Real Madrid after spending only seven months as manager of the club. The team, which currently occupies the third place in La Liga table, has appointed its former legend Zinedine Zidane as a replacement of Benitez, who was relieved of his duties on Monday, after an emergency meeting of Real Madrid’s board.
This makes the ex attacking midfielder the eleventh coach who is to be appointed over the 12-year tenure of Real Madrid’s president Florentino Perez. President Perez himself called Rafael Benitez “an absolute professional and a wonderful person”, but announced that the club’s board has made the decision of nominating Zidane as the new manager of the team.
Zinedine Zidane, who has been occupying the position of manager of the club’s B team, has been promoted as the first-team head coach. He made a promise of putting “his heart and soul” into the job in order to make sure that everything in the squad works out well. He also called Real the “the best club in the world” and ensured that the club would have a trophy by the end of the campaign.
Zidane promised that he would work hard with the players. His first match in charge of the squad is to be La Liga game against Deportivo la Coruna, which Real Madrid is scheduled to host on Saturday.
The final match of Rafael Benitez at the position of manager was the 2-2 draw of Real Madrid with Valencia on Sunday. It left the club at the third position in La Liga table, opening a four-point gap between them and the current leaders in the competition Atletico Madrid. Real Madrid are also two points adrift of Barcelona who are currently second.
The length of Zidane’s contract on top of the team has not been revealed, but he is expected to stay at the manager’s position and take control of Real’s first-team affairs at least until the end of the current campaign.
President Florentino Perez is yet expected to provide an explanation why the board of directors made the decision of dismissing Benitez. In fact, the former Real Madrid’s coach lost only three of his 25 games and managed to take the club into the last 16 of the Champions League competition. In addition, La Liga No.3 team has managed to come out victorious of several spectacular games – the 8-0 home win over Malmo and the 10-2 defeat against Rayo Vallecano.
Still, the squad have been unable to win any of their big away games under Benitez so far over the current campaign, including the games against Barcelona, Villarreal, Sevilla, etc. This was one of the main reasons why Real Madrid’s board decided to dismiss him and appoint Zidane instead. Moreover, the latter’s glamorous football career, including the fact he helped the team in the league in 2003, and his good work with the club’s B team became other factors that influenced Real’s board when making the decision.