Solari, Muñoz, Del Bosque and Zidane

Santi Solari was moved from the Real Madrid Castilla bench to oversee the first team following the dismissal of Julen Lopetegui as there were no other candidates. Or perhaps it was that the other potential replacement, Antonio Conte had second thoughts after Ramos' comments on how to secure the support of the dressing room citing flexibility as the key. This was an approach employed by the likes of previous managers such as Del Bosque, Ancelotti and Zidane. The hard-line approach was something the club was looking for with Florentino Perez apparently yearning for a return to the Bernabeu for Jose Mourinho. As it happens the Portuguese coach is unavailable as if that wasn't the case its more than feasible that a second spell as Madrid coach could have been a reality whereas Conte claimed that he wants to wait to June before committing to another role.

Santiago Solari

Promote from within

In the end, Florentino opted for Solari with the Argentine being offered the position on an 18 month deal. The new coach is no hard taskmaster and I feel he has earned the position. He's started positively and given the team a badly needed shake-up with a string of wins in his first four games. Just the other day I was observing on how seven of the 13 European Cups claimed by Madrid have been done so with managers who were drafted in from the Madrid youth  teams quickly in moments of crisis with the likes Miguel Muñoz, Del Bosque and Zidane all claiming ultimate European glory. Muñoz was in charge of Plus Ultra (as Real Madrid Castilla were formerly known), Del Bosque was the coordinator of the youth system and Zidane (like Solari) the RM Castilla boss.

Zinedine Zidane

Winners and losers

Despite these three being beginners, as is Solari, it doesn't automatically guarantee success but it does show that a club with the demands of Real Madrid can be managed successfully without a glowing CV or a tough guy sergeant major type approach. As is always the case when a new manager takes over, there are winners and losers. It would appear that Keylor, Isco and Asensio may see less playing time under the Argentine whilst Odriozola, Reguilón and Lucas Vázquez are three players favoured by Solari. His decision making has worked so far and the performance of the side in Vigo was a significant improvement in a tough away test. Solari is a coach clearly up to the task and long may his time on the Bernabeu bench last.