Real Madrid’s new manager hunt has taken another twist as former Chelsea gaffer Antonio Conte has ruled himself out of the running to take over at the Santiago Bernabeu. This is according to Sky Sports who were convinced Conte would take over a matter of days ago.
The Italian is now unlikely to return to management until the summer, as the big clubs in Europe rarely sack and hire managers midway through the season. That will leave Conte able to take over a club in the summer with fresh ideas and with a transfer window to operate in.
The Real Madrid job is one of the most difficult in world football and although Zinedine Zidane made it look easy, many big names managers in the past have tried and failed at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Now it appears it could be a toss-up between Roberto Martinez and Mauricio Pochettino, although there is the slight possibility that Santiago Solari could be given until the end of the season, as Florentino Perez looks to find his next gaffer. Hopes are high that Solari could follow the same path as Zidane, having come through the Madrid system as a manager, and managed the B side for the past two years.
Zidane also managed Real Madrid Castilla for two seasons before taking charge of the first team and Madrid could be convinced to repeat their past successes and appoint Solari on a permanent basis.
Madrid face Melilla in the Copa del Rey tonight before hosting Valladolid in the league at the weekend. A new manager potentially could be in place before they are back in Champions League action against Viktoria Plzen next Wednesday.