Julen Lopetegui , who will take the reins of Real Madrid after the path of Spain in World Cup , has several assets to impose his method.
The Real Madrid back to basics. And history will remember that the announcement of the successor of Zinedine Zidane was as surprising as the departure of the Frenchman, two weeks ago. Julen Lopetegui will succeed a coach who has won everything over a period of two and a half years, the most prestigious titles to the membership of his group. By leading Roja on the roof of the world, he would enter through the front door. The same one where Zidane had eclipsed after an ovation of the journalists present for his farewells. What is certain is that Real takes a new turn with the appointment of this house technician. So why is the arrival of Lopetegui a wise choice for the future?
Because he knows the context of the club
The most important point, perhaps, although it is not a guarantee. Like Zinedine Zidane – like Rafael Benitez, too – Julen Lopetegui wore the mythical white tunic during his playing career. A course that obviously did not leave the same images as those of a genius of the game, but allows him not to set foot in a new setting for him. Lopetegui was also able to observe the backstage of the club when he was on the other side of the barrier, during his coaching career, in the shadows, on the bench of Castilla, the club reserve team (2008-09). Like Zidane. And like Benitez, again. It is understood, the counterexample of the current Newcastle manager calls for some caution, but the knowledge of such a special environment is paramount.
Because he knows some important players
He was promoted to the head of the Spanish squad after the departure of Vincente Del Bosque in 2016. Julen Lopetegui regenerated a declining group based on the success of Real Madrid after the Barcelona era. His relations with the Spanish internationals of the Madrid squad will facilitate his integration, it is a certainty. And it is a favorable situation for the relationship with his group. Close to Sergio Ramos, who is the captain of Spain besides being that of Real, Lopeteguiwill be able to rely on the temple of the cloakroom to relay his message. The Basque technician also maintains good relations with other notable players on the team, such as defender Dani Carvajal, and offensive midfielders Marco Asensio, Lucas Vazquez and Isco. The latter has become an essential part of La Roja under his tutelage.
Because he is on an ascending trajectory
If Julen Lopetegui has never led a superstar of the caliber of Cristiano Ronaldo, the former coach of Porto shows for two years his ability to coach a group of players of the highest level. Andrés Iniesta, David Silva, Gérard Piqué and obviously Sergio Ramos, champions who have won everything, are receptive to his message. Having a good reputation in the Spanish federal system, Lopetegui made his with the Rojita, selections of young people of the country, that led to important successes (Euro U19, Euro Espoirs). Before taking his duties as coach in team A, he also made a noteworthy passage to FC Porto, embellished by a quarter-final Champions League despite a contrasting finish.
Because he is a builder
After the soap opera Zidane, Florentino Perez would he intend to put water in his wine? It is customary to say that the coaches of Real Madrid do not decide their fate – for their arrival as for their departure. By choosing his destiny, Zizou broke this habit, catching the leader of Madrid, accustomed to placing his pawns (players or coaches) as a whimsical kid would have fun with Christmas presents. In appointing LopeteguiPerez offers a long-term builder profile, where Zizou had never hidden his short-term aspirations. The Spaniard, pedagogue praised for his qualities as a trainer, has signed a three-year contract. An eternity in a club of this size, if the adventure goes to his exchange.
Because his tactical skills are recognized
On leaving Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane explained the reasons for this choice. “I think it’s the moment for everyone, for me, the club, the players, I think this team must continue to win and needs a change with a new discourse, a new method,” he said. the former playmaker of the Blues. This new method is precisely what Julen Lopetegui can bring to a group brought to live a period of transition after glory. It will not be a revolution, but an evolution. Another claw. Another style. As Lopetegui could do with Spain, whose game has been slightly verticalized since his arrival. It remains to know, now, if the story will be written with or without Cristiano Ronaldo. Lopetegui knows it. After the great adventure in Russia, two issues will arise for him, in Madrid. The change in continuity. Or the blank sheet.