Zinedine Zidane isn’t regretting his decision to return to Real Madrid and is unfazed by rumours linking Jose Mourinho to his job.
Since his big comeback in March, Zidane has failed to reignite the spark that led Real to three Champions Leagues in a row. He, in fact, hasn’t won even half of his games since returning to the dugout.
And things reached a new low for Zidane on Wednesday as Los Blancos suffered a 3-0 thrashing at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain in their Champions League opener.
It’s led to doubts over the Frenchman’s future, with the Spanish press claiming that Florentino Perez is beginning to have second thoughts. Apparently, the club president is considering moves for Mourinho and former Real midfielder Xabi Alonso.
“If I read the press, it says I’m gone,” Zidane told reporters on the latest rumours over his future.
“I feel strong. I have learned to never back down and to keep working until the very last moment.
“I’m not thinking about leaving. I’m only thinking of winning tomorrow. The difficulties that they speak of on the outside are something we can’t control.
“I made the decision to come back because I liked the look of the new project. Now I am here, I will try. We have to be together to achieve our objectives.”
When quizzed on the Mourinho talk, the 47-year-old replied: “It doesn’t bother me to hear about Mourinho; it is what it is. Here, you lose one game and you have to change everything.”
Mourinho himself rubbished the rumours linking him with a return to Madrid out of respect for Zidane on Friday.
Although Sunday’s trip to Sevilla could give Zidane a welcome opportunity to get back in the board’s good books.
With Real just two points behind leaders Sevilla in third, a victory in Andalusia could move them to the top of La Liga depending on the outcome of Atletico Madrid’s match with Celta Vigo.
“We must give everything we can to win the game,” added Zidane.
“It’s a difficult stadium but it’s always going to be like that.
“We have to keep working hard, prepare well for games and change things around. That’s football. We have a chance to change it around quickly. That’s what helps me get through.
“We can’t talk about everything that goes on outside the club and respond to all the criticism.”
Sevilla boss Julen Lopetegui, meanwhile, also spoke to the press ahead of the clash with his former club.
The match at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium will start at 21:00 (CET) on Sunday.