Manchester United: Is former Real Madrid boss Zidane set for Premier League management?

Zinedine Zidane is a top target for Manchester United, but should he go back to club management?

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REUTERS/Andrew Innerarity

The Red Devils have identified Zinedine Zidane as a top target should Jose Mourinho leave Old Trafford according to the Daily Express

The Manchester United boss has failed to disguise his dissatisfaction with life at the club after revealing his discontent with certain squad members and the United board in his latest press conference. 

He has slammed the Red Devils’ board in a recent press conference after the 4-1 defeat to Liverpool in the International Champions Cup, indicating that the club need to bring in more signings. Pundit Chris Sutton believes that Mourinho could be sacked as a result of his behaviour. He said: 

“He is starting to sound like a manager who wants out. To start dishing out ultimatums on transfer spending smacks of desperation. Once you start taking on the board, there is usually only one winner.”

Zidane left his post as Real Madrid at the end of last season after securing their third successive Champions League triumph. He is currently out of work, but has recently emerged as a shock candidate to replace the Portuguese boss. 

As it stands, Mourinho is still United boss and Zidane is not in contention for the job. However, the Frenchman has reportedly been added to United’s managerial wish list.

Club or country?

International management could be the better path for the Frenchman. 

Reports claim Zidane is next in line to become France manager after Didier Deschamps parts ways with the national club. The current France boss is adamant that his former teammate will manage the club one day. He said: 

“I don’t know what he (Zidane) has decided. For now, I think he wants to enjoy his rest, his family and loved ones.

“He will be coach at some point. When? I cannot say, but that seems logical to me. It will happen when it happens.”

Zidane has already proved that he can lead the country to success after he captained Les Bleus to a World Cup trophy in 1998. 

Onto club football, Manchester United have dealt with short-term managers since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson, and Mourinho would add to the list should he leave after two seasons. 

REUTERS/Rebecca Cook

Should Zidane replace him, the club would hope for a long-term manager this time around, leaving the Frenchman vulnerable of losing his chance to become France boss if Deschamps leaves in his time at Manchester United. 

Strained relations

Obviously, Zidane and Mourinho have different managerial styles. However, one thing they both have in common are strained relationships with their players. 

Zidane’s time with the European giants caused problems for the likes of Gareth Bale, Isco, and Dani Ceballos. All three of which have been uncertain of their future with the Spanish club, although their Madrid careers have been revived since his departure. 

As for Mourinho, his divisive time at Manchester United has been compounded by a sour relationship with winger Anthony Martial, who seems set to leave the club over the summer after leaving their pre-season tour early.

The Portuguese manager has also recently criticised his youth players, publicly stating that he would rather “play U16s than bad U23 players.”

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