Zinedine Zidane’s footballing philosophy may not be as clear-cut or defined as Pep Guardiola ‘s or even Arsene Wenger’s, but the Frenchman has made clear that he wants his team to play well by having more possession than their opponent.
In the short spell he has been in charge, Real Madrid have enjoyed a level of success that few could have predicted when Zidane took over from Rafa Benitez.
Los Blancos have managed to become the first team in the modern era to retain the Champions League, while the former Juventus midfielder has also brought the domestic championship back to the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu for the first time since 2012.
In an interview with Bein Sports, the 45-year-old has lifted the lid on life as the team’s coach, as well as intimating he wants his team to play well with an increased percentage of possession.
“I have so many extraordinary players that I want the team to play well,” he explained.
“I am looking for the best style and that is to have more possession than your opponent, even against Barcelona.”
Zidane had been in control of Castilla when Benitez was dismissed in December of 2015 and he recalled how Florentino Perez was quick to call him to offer the job.
“The agreement with Florentino to start coaching the first team happened very quickly,” he said.
“I was preparing a game with Castilla when he called me.
“We work very well, his strategy is clear and he knows how to get where he wants to be.”
Cristiano Ronaldo has found a new lease of life since Zidane’s arrival, with the pair working closely on a micromanaged fitness regime that should keep the 32-year-old fresh for the entire season.
When quizzed on the club’s iconic forward, Zidane intimated that the former Manchester United star isn’t human, such is his talent and workrate.
“Cristiano is an extra-terrestrial,” he said.
While things are going well at this precise moment, the former Bordeaux academy graduate is acutely aware how quickly the wind can change for a coach, so he refused to put a timestamp on his job at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
“I am the coach at this moment, although I do not know for how long,” he intimated.
For now, Zidane’s main focus is on the next game, which takes place against Levante this Saturday lunchtime.