Zidane: Mr. Champions League

06 Feb 2018

Real Madrid’s season will only be deemed a success if they do something special in the Champions League, given that they’re out of the LaLiga title race and have been knocked out of the Copa del Rey.

As much as their recent performances have been unconvincing, the fact that Zinedine Zidane has such a good record in the Champions League means the club’s supporters can dream of a third European triumph in a row.

Since taking over at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, the French coach has overseen 12 international do-or-die clashes and has won them all.

He has won six two-legged knockout ties in the Champions League, plus two finals in the same competition, against Atletico Madrid and Juventus.

On top of that, he has won two UEFA Super Cups and two Club World Cups.

Most encouragingly for Los Blancos, Zidane has won all kinds of ties, orchestrating comebacks like the one against Wolfsburg in 2016 as well as blowing teams away in the first leg, as they did last year by beating Atletico 3-0 at home in the semi-finals.

Zidane has also enjoyed international success in the 2017/18 season, even if domestically his side have struggled, as Manchester United were beaten in the UEFA Super Cup in August, before Gremio were swatted aside in the Club World Cup final in December.

Paris Saint-Germain may be one of the most in-form teams on the planet right now, but Zidane’s love affair with the Champions League – a tournament he also won as a player and as an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti – will be a difficult relationship to break up.

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