REAL MADRID

Real Madrid: Allegri, Raúl the frontrunners to replace Zidane

With Zinedine Zidane seemingly poised to depart as boss, AS understands Real Madrid are eyeing either Raúl or Massimiliano Allegri as his replacement.

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Real Madrid: Allegri, Raúl the frontrunners to replace Zidane
MASSIMO PINCA REUTERS

With Zinedine Zidane seemingly intent on leaving his role as Real Madrid head coach at the end of the season, AS understands the LaLiga giants are considering appointing club legend Raúl González Blanco or former Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri as the Frenchman’s successor. As things stand, Allegri appears to be the likelier candidate.

Allegri postponing response to other offers as he waits for Real Madrid

While they have been at pains not to plan for a change of coach in a manner disrespectful to the current incumbent, Madrid have already been in contact with Allegri in anticipation of a potential Zidane exit. The 53-year-old, who has been unattached since leaving Juve in 2019, has delayed responding to offers from two other major clubs as he waits for further word from Los Blancos.

Eintracht eyeing summer Raúl appointment

As of a week ago, meanwhile, Raúl’s agent, Ginés Carvajal, had not had any conversations with Madrid chiefs that suggested the coach’s job would be available in the summer. What's more, it has been reported that the former club captain, who is now in charge of Madrid's 'B' team, has an offer to take over at Bundesliga side Eintracht Frankfurt next season. Indeed, it is said there are Eintracht players who have been told that Raúl will be their coach in 2021/22.

However, taking the reins of the Madrid first team next term would be a better option for the 43-year-old. Although an adventure abroad could enable him to take the next step as a coach, it could also end up causing his developing career to hit the buffers if unsuccessful.

Allegri keen to take over at Real Madrid

Having been sounded out about his availability by people close to the club, Allegri is eager to take the Madrid job. For Los Merengues, appointing the Italian appears the most favourable option - if Raúl remains with the second team. This would give the club a back-up plan if things didn’t work out under Allegri (one reminiscent of the scenario in which Zidane, who at the time had no elite experience as a head coach, was promoted to the seniors to replace Rafa Benítez).

Before turning to such a contingency, however, club president Florentino Pérez would have handed the task of overseeing the renewal of the Real Madrid team - with players such as Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé slated to arrive - to a coach with proven top-level pedigree.