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SOCCER

Raúl lined up to take over the Real Madrid coaching job

The Castilla coach and Madrid legend has the backing of the club’s sports management to be a candidate to replace Ancelotti. The Italian’s contract expires in 2024.

Update:
Raúl lined up to take over the Real Madrid coaching job
JESUS ALVAREZ ORIHUELADiarioAS

Raúl González Blanco, the eternal captain who holds the record for the most appearances (741) for Real Madrid, is also one of the top coaches developing young talent in the La Fábrica. His excellent work with Castilla (who sit third in Group I of the RFEF First Division), has aroused interest from clubs in the Premier League and Germany. It has also gained Raúl credit within the club when the time comes to make the leap to the first team in the future.

Carlo Ancelotti’s contract ends in 2024 and Raúl is a serious candidate to take over the reins. The Italian is one of the Brazilian Football Confederation’s top targets to take charge over the national side next summer. As recently reported by UOL Esporte, Ancelotti’s agent, Frank Trimboli, travelled to Brazil a few days ago to get a clearer idea of how Brazilian football functions at first hand. His trip has been interpreted as an approach to sound out the terrain and whether the Madrid coach would be suited to work there. Raúl’s presence in Madrid’s youth academy gives Madrid’s leadership some peace of mind, should Ancelotti decide to accept the CBF’s proposal.

Leadership, charisma, a vast knowledge of the club and his technical aptitudes are the arguments that support Raúl’s future candidacy for Real Madrid’s first team bench. Additionally, since 2013, the club has opted mainly for coaches who have worked at La Fábrica. In fact, four of the last five coaches met that requirement: Rafa Benítez, Julen Lopetegui, Zidane and Solari. Ancelotti is the exception to that rule.

Raúl, for his part, is clear about the steps he wants to take. Real Madrid, as his first option, and the Premier League as the alternative - those are the only two destinations he has in mind. If the chance to coach the Madrid first team fails to materialise, he will consider accepting any of the proposals that arrive from England. Last month, Leeds made him an offer to fill the position of the dismissed Jesse Marsch. However, the former captain considered that it was not the right time to take on that particular project.

After winning the first Youth League in the club’s history in 2020, his dream at the moment is to gain promotion with Castilla to the Second Division. Achieving that would also be an important boost to convert him, if it is not still, as the first option to fill the first team coaching vacancy if Ancelotti moves on.

Club management feel that that Raúl’s influence has not only been felt in the collective performance of the teams he has led at La Fábrica, but also in the growth experienced by some of his pupils. The most notable case is that of Álvaro Rodríguez, the last great promise to emerge from Madrid’s youth academy. “Álvaro was a somewhat uncoordinated boy when he arrived at Madrid, but Raúl has worked a lot with him and has turned him into a striker with enormous projection. Álvaro owes a lot to Raúl,” say club sources. The club’s sports management considers him prepared to make the leap to the elite and, therefore, to take charge of the senior side in the future. President Florentino Pérez will have the last word.