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Zidane and the Kepa soap opera


Real Madrid coach Zidane couldn't be any clearer: "I don't need goalkeeper". The hero of the eight titles won in the past two years (which puts him level with Luis Molowny and only behind Miguel Muñoz, who bagged 14) has got the right to raise his voice so those in the complaints department hear him loud and clear.

Zidane's two fantastic years with Keylor Navas

Zizou isn't a man to make big demands. He makes the most of what he's got and doesn't makes excuses when he loses. I like the profile of the Frenchman, who understood from the moment he arrived in 2001 what Madrid's historic values mean. If he's raised his voice in a press conference, it's to make it clear to the dressing room that he's on the players' side. He's had two fantastic years with this group of players and doesn't want to heighten tensions in the dressing room by giving the green light to a decision taken by the executives at the club. He's also made it quite clear that the signing of Athletic keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga is nothing to do with him. ZZ doesn't get involved in things outwith his remit.

SIgning Kepa is good for Real Madrid

Let it be known that I'm the first person to think signing Kepa is a good thing. He's a great keeper now and is a great buy for the future. But what's also true is that with Keylor the goalkeeping position is well covered at the Bernabéu, and with Kiko Casilla the coach felt happy from here to June 30, with the second goalie only on duty for the Copa del Rey.

The first rift between Zidane and Real Madrid bosses

Keylor has had a couple of injuries in the last two seasons and that's led to Real Madrid wanting to move quickly, but a couple of injuries doesn't mean he's going to be unavailable necessarily. And with Keylor in fine shape at the moment, there's no urgency to cover a position which is perfectly covered by the Costa Rican star (expect him to shine in Russia as he did at the World Cup in Brazil). Zidane prefers not to meddle with things that are working well. I get that and I also understand why Real Madrid want to sort things out for the future. But the most important thing is that the signing doesn't destabilise the group. We're witnessing the first time there's been a rift between Zidane and the club. Let's see how it turns out...