Manchester United v Manchester City Match in Pictures
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Manchester United are being heavily linked with Zinedine Zidane amid their turbulent form under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Norwegian’s job is in danger at Old Trafford after seeing his team lose six of their last 12 matches across all competitions. So Express Sport will now take a look at six players Zidane admires amid the current speculation.
Let’s start with the obvious.
Zidane won three Champions League titles in a row during his first stint at Real Madrid, establishing himself as one of the best managers in world football in the process.
And Ronaldo played a key role in those trumps, with the 36-year-old producing his best performances under the Frenchman.
Reports have stated Ronaldo has been consulted by the Glazers when it comes to any potential Zidane appointment.
And reuniting the pair could be the ticket to turning the club’s woeful form around.
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Zidane also managed Raphael Varane during his time in Spain.
The 49-year-old gave his compatriot his famous No 5 shirt in the midst of that spell and that led to Varane scaling new heights as a player.
He ousted Pepe from the team prior to the Portugal international’s departure, becoming Sergio Ramos’ regular partner in crime in the process.
Zidane wanted Varane to stay prior to his own Real exit.
And a reunion could be on the cards should the Glazers opt to relieve Solskjaer of his duties.
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It’s an open secret that Zidane has admired Paul Pogba for a number of years.
The 49-year-old wanted to sign the United star back in 2016, only for the midfielder to leave Juventus for Old Trafford instead.
And Zidane was disappointed when Florentino Perez refused to pursue Pogba in 2019.
Uniting at the Theatre of Dreams could convince Pogba to stay, with the midfielder’s contract expiring at the end of the season.
And Zidane could help get the player firing on all fronts, something Solskjaer and Jose Mourinho have failed to do so far.
Donny van de Beek
Donny van de Beek is another player Zidane wanted to sign for Real.
He’d hoped to recruit the Netherlands international in 2020 but, with the La Liga giants saving their cash at the time, United swooped in instead.
Van de Beek’s time at the club is yet to work out, however.
He’s made just four Premier League starts under Solskjaer who, no matter the situation, appears reluctant to regularly unleash the 24-year-old.
But, under Zidane, things could be different.
Zidane was eyeing a move for Jadon Sancho in the summer transfer window of 2020.
And he’s another player who could benefit from the arrival of the Frenchman at Old Trafford.
Sancho has failed to score or assist for United so far.
And there’s a sense that he’d fare better under a different manager.
Zidane, given his determination to bring Sancho to Spain, could be the right person to get the 21-year-old operating at the peak of his powers.
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