Zidane keeps winning as Mourinho falters

Real Madrid have strung together 16 consecutive LaLiga wins under the guidance of Zinedine Zidane and in doing so have equaled the previous record held by Pep Guardiola in his time at Barça. The previous record before that dates back to the 1960-61 season and was held by by Miguel Muñoz and his Real Madrid side that included the likes of Di Stéfano, Puskas and Gento. The Barça team that surpassed the record were driven on by the Argentine star Leo Messi. Zidane’s current Real Madrid squad can boast a host of international talents headed by Cristiano Ronaldo and competition is so fierce in the squad that even a top international such as James Rodriguez struggles to secure a place in the starting XI.

Barcelona's coach Josep Guardiola gives a press conference in Barcelona on April 27, 2012.

To achieve such a record (and we’re not talking about not just losing here but winning every game) one needs to have an extraordinarily talented group of players but the role of the coach can’t be underestimated either. Managing a dressing room at a huge club with major talents and egos requires a degree of extreme diligence. Back in the day Muñoz, as I have been lead to believe was attentive to Di Stéfano whilst Guardiola established himself as a reference point for younger players who looked up to and hugely respected the Catalan coach.

Zidane has been able to carefully manage a squad full of international stars. He’s also been able to remove himself from the whims of the club president and get the players on his side. He’s the opposite of his predecessor Rafa Benitez who was politically aware and over anxious at the demands of Florentino. The French coach made the call of bringing in Casemiro to generate more equilibrium in the side to the determent of James and Isco (one player loved by the president, the other by the supporters). Coincidentally the winning run started as Casemiro started to play for the team and the team subsequently secured the 2015/16 Champions League in Milan. Whilst Jose Mourinho falters at Manchester United Zidane is triumphant at Madrid.

CASEMIRO