Zinedine Zidane thinks Real Madrid’s defeat to Atletico Madrid on Saturday could cost him his job.
The Frenchman watched his team lose 1-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu - and fall further behind Barcelona in the title race - and was dejected following the loss.
The defeat, coupled with Cristiano Ronaldo’s bizarre attack on his teammates, suggests something is clearly wrong at Los Blancos and Zidane thinks changes are inevitable.
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The 43-year-old was quoted by Marca as saying: "I have complete confidence in my players; I believe they will be behind me. Next year we'll probably have to make changes, maybe even change managers too, but whatever happens we have to keep going about our business.”
Zidane tried to reassure fans that the title race isn’t over despite the 12-point difference between Madrid and Barcelona, but his comments are likely to fall on deaf ears.
He continued: "I am not happy about the game; I can't be, as we lost, but I didn't like the way we played either. Right now the important thing is to think about our next match.
“The title race isn't over yet; it's difficult if you drop points, but we're not going to throw in the towel whatever happens. What we've got to do now is get ready for next Wednesday's game, and win it. [Saturday] was a harsh blow, losing at home to Atlético.”
Antoine Griezmann’s goal separated the two sides as Diego Simeone done his reputation no harm. Atletico now have a four-point lead over their rivals as they look to finish above Real for the second time in three seasons.
Zidane must now turn his attentions to the Champions League, which represents his only chance of winning silverware in his first season as Los Blancos’ boss.
Madrid have one foot in the quarter-finals after beating Roma 2-0 at the Stadio Olimpico in the first leg of their last 16 clash and the Frenchman is aware that victory in the Europe’s premier tournament will paper over the cracks.
He continued: "To the fans, I say that we have things to do - the Champions League and the Spanish league games we have left. It is a difficult moment, but we have to be professional about everything and think about the next match, because Real Madrid never give up. We will come in for criticism, but that's football.”
Welcome to the world of football management.
Zidane replaced Rafa Benitez in January and appeared to have picked up the swing of things immediately, winning three of his first four matches and scoring 17 goals in the process.
But one point from Madrid’s last two games has derailed their title hopes and, as the former Ballon d’Or winner knows only too well, the Los Blancos faithful demand trophies.
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