Real Madrid’s B team, Castilla, fell to Ibiza in the promotion playoff for the Segunda on Sunday afternoon. Much of the intrigue, however, lay on the touchline, where Raul was serving as coach. The legendary Madrid striker is the favourite to succeed Zinedine Zidane as coach of the first team.
It’s not official, but it’s been widely reported that Zidane has told his players that he’ll be leaving the club at the end of this season. The Frenchman won La Liga last season to mark his second spell in charge of the club, and are still in the running, albeit as underdogs, to retain it this season.
Zidane is said to believe that a cycle is coming to a close, however, and that a change is needed to carry Madrid into the future. Given Zidane has used several Castilla players this season, it’s evident there’s a considerable swell of talent emerging from La Fabrica at the moment. Raul would be well-placed to step into the first team following that vein of thought.
“Although it may not seem like it, it’s a day to be happy for what the team has done,” Raul said post-match following the defeat to Ibiza in comments carried by Marca. “We’ll learn to value it soon even though the boys are crying right now.
“This is my home and this is where I want to be. This is not the time to talk about anyone’s future. We’ve learned a lot this year. I’m an employee of the club. Since I decided to become a coach three or four years ago it’s best to do it at home, at my club, gaining experience and coaching in the best way. I’m a club man, I’m happy at home and I’m excited to continue.”