Real Madrid’s Zinedine Zidane Is More Than Just A Lucky Manager

We can never underestimate the amount luck plays when it comes to football. Every great team benefits from luck.

But I think we now have to accept that Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has more about him than just a lucky streak.

Zizou is on the verge of guiding his Real side to a second successive Champions League title. No team has managed to retain Europe’s elite club trophy during the Champions League era.

Mangers like Jose Mourinho, Marcelo Lippi, Sir Alex Ferguson, Carlo Ancelotti and Pep Guardiola have all failed to to do so and that shows you the enormity of the task.

Zidane watched on as his side won the famous trophy last summer, that was after just five months in charge of the Blancos.

This season Zizou guided Madrid to their first La Liga title in five years! They would finish with 93 points and three ahead of Barcelona.

In total Zidane has managed Real to 64 wins in 86 games, that’s a win record of 74%.

So why do people think he’s just lucky?

Well some feel he’s just the boss because of his playing pedigree. But it should be noted that he has been an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti and previous to that he was an advisor to Mourinho. In 2014 he took charge of Real’s B team.

So he didn’t just walk in and become the club’s manager. He worked his way up, yes he was fast tracked but he still took on some more menial roles first. His route roughly resembles the one Pep took at Barca.

You can also look at the great players who have failed to do anything in the management side of the game. Alan Shearer, Ruud Gullit, Diego Maradona and Roy Keane were all fantastic players but were mediocre at best as gaffers.

Zidane is more in the mould of a Johan Cruyff or a Franz Beckenbauer. A world class player who can allow stars to flourish.

Look at how the Frenchman has managed Cristiano Ronaldo.

He knows the forward is his best talent but he also sees that the Portuguese superstar is ageing. Zidane has been there himself, as you get older you start to realise things don’t come as easily as they once did. You can either ignore the issue and try and bluff yourself and the world or you can adapt your game and habits to remain a shining star.

Thankfully for Cristiano he listened to his manager.

Zidane wanted his best player ready for the biggest games and the right times. He asked this generation’s true Galactico to rest more and forget about the Pichichi top-scorer award and instead concentrate more on getting the vital goals.

Ronaldo has played in less games this term but he’s still produced and importantly he’s come good towards the end of the season. The attacker has scored fourteen times in his last ten outings!

He listened to his manager because he can relate to Zizou. Ronaldo knows that Zidane was also a world class player and went through the same transition towards the end of his career.

You can also look at Isco and see that Zidane is a great man manager. The Spanish creative maestro has been in and out of the team but he’s always eager to impress and doesn’t moan about his boss. He will be probably be rewarded for this by getting a starting berth in today’s final and will no doubt shine.

It’s extremely telling that no one in the squad seems to come out and attack Zidane. Some will no doubt want more game time, that’s natural at any big club. Before they would hound managers out like Rafa Benitez and even Mourinho, but Zidane seems to have a calming influence on the squad and more importantly he has their respect.

Yes Zidane is extremely fortunate to have a squad of tremendous players but you need to manage those talents properly. We’ve seen plenty of well respected coaches leave the Bernabeu because they couldn’t get the most out of super talented individuals or turn those world-class individuals into a well functioning team.

Zinedine Zidane has came in, under a lot of pressure and scrutiny, with many people expecting and even hoping he’d fail. But much like he was as a player, Zizou believes in himself and those around him. He doesn’t bother with the sideshows, he concentrates on the centre stage and the task in hand.

He is much more than just a lucky manager and he could walk into the record books tonight if he manages to guide his team to one of their greatest ever feats!

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