Cristiano Ronaldo has revealed he has “more feeling” for Zinedine Zidane than he had for former Real Madrid manager Rafael Benitez.
The 2014 Ballon d’Or winner also admitted that his Madrid team-mates share a stronger bond with Zidane, who replaced Benitez earlier this month.
Ronaldo and Benitez reportedly endured a fractured relationship. The Independent even suggested Ronaldo issued a ‘he goes or I go’ ultimatum to the club’s board.
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Benitez was sacked earlier in the month and Ronaldo has had a final parting shot.
“He [Zidane] has given Real Madrid new wings, a push,” the 30-year-old said, reported the Daily Mirror. “We identify more with Zidane. Football is like that.
“Zidane and Benitez both wanted the best for the club.
“Personally I have more feeling for Zizou, but don’t ask me why. He has an empathy with the players and I am very happy and excited.
“It’s an interesting moment for me and the players. We are in good shape and working hard."
Benitez was sacked as Los Blancos manager seven months after joining the club following a 2-2 draw with Valencia that left Madrid four points adrift of leaders Atletico Madrid.
Benitez’s overall record wasn’t terrible. Madrid lost only three of 25 games under the former Liverpool boss and had wins of 8-0 and 10-2.
But the 4-0 home loss to Barcelona in November didn’t help the Spaniard’s cause and could have been the catalyst for a rift between manager and players.
Zidane, who played five seasons for Madrid and became a part of the first ‘galacticos’ team, has led the Spanish giants to wins of 5-0 and 5-1 in his two games in charge.
The 43-year-old is getting the best out of Gareth Bale, the Welshman netting four goals in those two victories.