Real Madrid: Three reasons why Zinedine Zidane may be sacked before the end of the season
"I've been here as player and coach for 18 years, and there's going to be pressure. It's the pressure that, here, there's always going to be talk about 'We've got to change coach!' I don't feel undervalued because the past is the past. Football forgets what you've achieved and that's just life"
You'd be forgiven for feeling these are the words of a man on death row. They escaped the lips of a man heralded as a legend by club and country as a player. The same man who was heralded legendary again by said club as a manager.
Zinedine Zidane's second coming at Real Madrid as coach and manager has been far from spectacular. In fact many would argue, that the second coming is in danger of tarnishing his first. Incredible, by any standards, considering that he took just around three years to lead Real to three consecutive UEFA Champions League trophies.
There is a sense of anxiety in the air surrounding the Santiago Bernabeu. The Spanish giants have had a tough season and more since their last Champions League; a season and a half in which they are now seeing their third manager. The chances are that they may be seeing a fourth quite soon.
Zidane's position in the Real Madrid hot-seat at present is precarious. A multitude of reasons are contributing to this. Reasons which may seem important enough to sack the legend before the 2019-20 season ends. The following are three reasons why this may happen.
#1 Poor results
It isn't like Real Madrid are down in the relegation zone, but the tension amongst fans, in the boardroom and even the dressing room is palpable. The club spent heavily in the summer to kickstart a phase of rebuilding. They stand behind Barcelona in the La Liga table in second place by only a point. Something which doesn't come across as alarming.
However, Madrid have won only five of their nine La Liga games which is considered below par by many. And its not even the league standing or the number of games won that makes for poor reading for Madridistas as much as the manner of the losses, draws and the teams some of these results have been suffered to, does.
Real have drawn to the likes of Valladolid and lost to the likes of Mallorca. They barely managed to keep Levante at bay, were given a bit of a scare by Granada and beat Sevilla rather unconvincingly by a goal.
And this is just in La Liga! In the UEFA Champions League, Zidane's side were thrashed 3-0 by Paris St Germain in Paris and Club Brugge scored twice at the Bernabeu before Zidane's men scraped back to tie the game and settle for a draw. Even against Galatasaray, Real were not convincing as they managed to win by a solitary goal.
Previous managers have been fired for less and a lot of people in the stands as well as in the boardroom are grumbling about the results. Many were of the opinion that had Zidane's side not won at Galatasaray, he would have lost his job that night.
What would one make of the statistic that Zidane in his second coming has a worse win rate than Santiago Solari, the man he replaced? A man walking on a tightrope, Zidane would need a series of wins to make sure he doesn't take a tumble!