Rafael Nadal told to ‘find new job’ with tennis icon tipped for Real Madrid role

Rafael Nadal set for 2024 farewell after pulling out of French Open

Rafael Nadal has been told to ‘find a new job’ when he announces his retirement from tennis after being linked with a surprise role in football with Real Madrid. The Spaniard is planning to leave behind his illustrious career at the end of the next year after being hampered by injuries over the past few years. And reports have claimed Nadal would be keen on taking up a role in the hierarchy at the Spanish club when he steps away from tennis.

Nadal announced prior to the French Open that he would be taking the rest of the year off due to persistent injury problems. He plans to return in 2024 when he will bring the curtain down on his sparkling career with a final swansong.

The 22-time Grand Slam winner will return to his adopted home at Roland Garros for one final time to go for his 15th French Open crown and could also participate in the Paris 2024 Olympics.

The 37-year-old has been robbed of playing time this year and, while his uncle Toni has also indicated he could play beyond that if the injuries subside, it seems Nadal is already being lined up for the next step in his professional life.

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Reports in Spain claim that Real Madrid president Florentino Perez could step down after 14 years in the role having helped the La Liga giants preside over winning their 14th Champions League title. And Nadal has been mentioned as one of the figures, along with Emilio Butragueno, qho could assume the role when Perez decides to leave his position.

When asked about the possibility of Nadal moving into a football role, former world No 9 Andrea Petkovic joked that Nadal must find a new job after retirement – and thinks he could take on the job without any major issues.

“First of all, what do you have to do as a president? You represent, which Rafael can represent, you go to a few press conferences and he can do that,” Petkovic said to Tennis Channel Live.

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“If you have to keep up a ball, he can do that too, so why not? I don’t want to think of it, but soon retirement is on the horizon and you better find a new job, Rafa.”

Despite being born in the Mallorcan town of Manacor, Nadal is a lifelong Madrid fan and has been spotted on multiple occasions attending matches at the Santiago Bernabeu, as well as the Champions League final triumph over Liverpool in May 2022.

He maintains a strong relationship with Perez and other senior officials with the Spanish club, and there have been suggestions he could step into an honorary presidential position.

When asked directly about if he would be interested, Nadal refused to rule out his interest but insisted it was not relevant while Perez was still serving his term.

“If you ask me if I would like it, of course I would, why not? But there is more to it,” Nadal previously told Spanish publication El Mundo in 2017.

“I think it will not be. We are very good as we are. We have a great president right now, and I don’t think Real Madrid needs me.

“But we never know what can happen in the future. It is not something I can raise today.”

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