REAL MADRID

Zidane returns negative covid-19 PCR test but remains isolated

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane remains in isolation after he was in contact with someone who recently tested positive for covid-19.

Zidane in isolation due to coronavirus contact
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Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane remains in isolation ahead of this weekend's game against Osasuna after having been in direct contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19.

The Real Madrid coach did not oversee the first team's training session on Thursday morning and although the result of a PCR test later in the day came back negative, it remains up to LaLiga to give the Frenchman the all-clear to travel to Pamplona for the match. 

Zidane only went to Madrid’s Valdebebas training ground this morning to undergo the PCR test, as well as another antigen test. The Madrid coach tested negative for the rapid antigen test and the PCR test also returned a negative result.

Zidane will follow LaLiga protocol

Under LaLiga protocol, Zidane will have to remain in isolation for three days until he undergoes another PCR test, even if after testing negative on Thursday.

If he tests negative in the second test, he will be able to return to work with the rest of the squad. The timelines, however, can be reduced depending on both the proximity of the contact and the last time that Zidane was in contact with the person.

Bettoni ready to step in for Zidane

Zidane could miss Real Madrid’s trip to Osasuna on Saturday, which is currently at risk of suspension due to threats of a storm in Pamplona, as well as the semifinal of the Spanish Super Cup against Athletic in Málaga next Thursday, 14 January.

If Zidane is unable to coach the side in either or both of those fixtures his number two, David Bettoni, will step in. Bettoni has been Zidane's assistant for six years since the Bernabéu boss was in charge of Real Madrid Castilla and the pair played together at Cannes. He has his UEFA Pro Licence, giving him the paperwork to take charge of Madrid for hid debut as a senior manager.