Former Real Madrid Coach Benito Floro, now in charge of the national team of Canada, reveals offers from Spain.
Madrid are in Montreal for pre-season and AS spoke to Floro, who had the Santiago Bernabeu bench between 1992 and 1994 and also led Villarreal, Albacete and Sporting Gijon before taking a peripatetic life with spells in Japan, Mexico and Ecuador, occasionally returning to posts in his homeland.
“I’ve not given up on returning to Spain. I’ve had offers from two or three Spanish clubs, but their Presidents didn’t want to admit their teams were one of the 10 or 12 who could go down even doing things right and that therefore it was important to fight to stay in the Primera. What they wanted was a firefighter, and I didn’t want that situation,” he explained.
“Canada’s FIFA ranking [of 100] is relative. It bears no correspondence with our potential, that there are teams who play more games than others. We had a ranking of 120 when I arrived and we’ve reached 80 or thereabouts. The current situation is as hopeful as it is difficult as the United States have more resources than us.
“Madrid is one of the teams the football Press here talk about. Their presence here is already a positive. I’m not here to tell war stories, but I’m often asked about my time with Madrid’s famous players.”
Floro was asked about the current incumbent as Madrid Coach, Zinedine Zidane, and said he has been impressed with how the Frenchman has handled a stressful role.
“To be a Coach is already wonderful and to be responsible for Madrid is a joy, but the pressure is on you. If you’re aware of all the negatives they say about you…” he noted.
“I had no predetermined idea of Zidane’s level. I waited to see his first formations, selections, changes and opinions. They needed to quickly learn to press collectively, because it was clear to me that if the players continued to progress they would be strong.
“Compared to Rafa Benitez? Comparisons are never pleasant. There are famous Coaches classified as defensive because they want a deep defence, but that can be a resource in a great team, though never a modus operandi.”