Zidane tells Real Madrid players he’s leaving club

Reports in Spain claim that Zinedine Zidane has told the dressing room that he’s leaving Real Madrid at the end of the season.

According to Marca, the meeting took place last Saturday after Chelsea eliminated Los Blancos from the Champions League, just before they played Sevilla in La Liga.

The Frenchman did it after training, delaying the start of his press conference. Zidane has eight days left in charge of Madrid, two games to play to win his third league title.

The decision has been long-pondered and is firm, Football Espana report.

Zidane believes his cycle at Madrid is over and the time has come for him to step aside. It’s not as surprising as the first time he left the club, which came as a bolt from the blue. Zidane has refused to clarify his future for the past two months, but dropped serious hints that his time at the club was coming to an end in yesterday’s press conference.

The Frenchman will leave the Santiago Bernabeu with either eleven or 12 titles to his name, depending on whether he leads Madrid to the league title this season or not.

Los Blancos face Athletic Bilbao today before playing Villarreal on the final day, games they have to win and hope Atletico Madrid drop points to retain the title. Only Miguel Munoz, who took 14, has won more honours at the club.

Madrid’s focus has now switched to finding the ideal successor. Raul, currently in charge of Castilla, is said to be the best placed to step up, although former Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri and soon-to-be former German national team coach Joachim Low are also in the picture.