Just days after winning a third consecutive UEFA Champions League final, Zinedine Zidane has shockingly decided to leave Real Madrid.
The French manager announced on Thursday that he is stepping down from his position as the club’s manager. Zidane took charge of the club for two-and-a-half seasons, winning three UEFA Champions Leagues as part of a nine-trophy haul with the club.
“I love this club,” he said at a press conference on Thursday. “What I think is that this team needs to continue winning but I think it needs a change, a different voice, another methodology. And that’s why I took this decision.
“It’s a strange moment to do so, I know, but an important one too,” added Zidane on Thursday. “I had to do this for everyone.”
While Champions League success has defined Zidane’s reign at Real Madrid, league success did not follow in the 2017-18 season. Real Madrid finished third in La Liga this past season while also falling in the Copa del Rey quarterfinals.
Still, Zidane’s Champions League success is ultimately what defined his stay as he joined Bob Paisley and Carlo Ancelotti as the only managers to win three UEFA Champions League titles.