Luka Modric admits “when Zinedine Zidane speaks, everyone wants to absorb what he says” and that Real Madrid “weren’t physically ready” under Rafa Benitez.
Zidane has enjoyed a 100 percent record since replacing Benitez as Madrid Coach, and Modric hailed the Frenchman’s management style as he hinted the 55-year-old struggled to command authority of the dressing room.
“The first year under [Carlo] Ancelotti and Zidane was great,” the midfield told Sportske Novotski.
“Now [Zidane’s] different. He has his own ideas and ways of implementing them.
“It’s only the start, but he’s already made clear that he wants compact lines, us to be near our opponents and press high when we lose the ball in order to get it back quickly.
“[Zidane’s] charisma is very important for us. He’s one of the best players in history.
“When he speaks, everyone wants to absorb what he says. He was everything as a player, has great experience and is very convincing when he speaks.
“Zidane is very concise, he goes straight to the point and doesn’t use any unnecessary words.
“[On Rafa Benitez], we weren’t getting good results for what is expected of Madrid, so what happened is inevitable.
“Everyone has their own opinion, but I don’t think we were physically ready [for the season].
“Since preseason, it had been a problem because you can’t catch up after that.
“We shared a relationship of mutual and professional respect from day one.
“I felt it when he was sacked, but I wish him all the best for the future.”