Where next for Zinedine Zidane? Manchester United, France, and Newcastle all in the mix

Zinedine Zidane is one of the most sought-after coaches in world soccer right now, so where might we see him pop up next? Manchester United could come knocking.

As Tottenham found out last summer, there is something of a dearth of top-class managers available on the open market right now.

Zinedine Zidane certainly comes into that category, though, with the Frenchman winning two La Liga titles and three Champions League crowns at Real Madrid.

He himself seems happy to wait for the right job rather than rushing into something, and he has reportedly got his heart set on one very specific job too.

After Manchester United were taken apart in their own backyard by Liverpool. Zidane quickly emerged as one of the favourites to take over from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, should the big chiefs at Old Trafford spring into action.

However, there's a few other managerial options out there so we have taken a look at what might be next for the Frenchman.

Manchester United

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Man Utd vs Leicester

Zidane has been most heavily linked to the Manchester United job with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer starting to come under real pressure at Old Trafford.

A glance through social media posts certainly suggests the fans would be very receptive of Zidane, but the real question is whether Zidane would even want to take the job if offered.

Zidane appears to be a man who goes with his heart over his head. He cut his coaching teeth at Real Madrid with their Castilla team and then graduated to coach the senior squad.

When he left after his first spell, he again wasn't short of offers but was only tempted back by Madrid.

As a player, Zidane never played in the Premier League, so you'd have to ask yourself just how tempted he would be to come as a manager, regardless of Manchester United's unquestioned gravitas. He is the current favourite to take over should Ole be relieved of his duties as boss.


Zinedine Zidane with World Cup

Zidane was a brilliant presence in the France team for more than a decade, amassing more than 100 caps and scoring 31 goals.

His final act in the Les Bleus shirt is perhaps his most memorable one, however - headbutting Marco Materazzi to be sent off in the 2006 World Cup final.

Before that came the glory, though. He scored in the final as France won the 1998 World Cup and was brilliant again when they won the Euro 2000.

Indeed, a 2004 poll in France named him 'the most popular Frenchman of all time'.

There is every chance that the France job will become available after the 2022 Qatar World Cup, and Zidane may be making sure he is available to land the role when it does.


Zinedine Zidane as a Juventus player

Though Real Madrid are the club with which you'd always associate Zidane, it was Juventus who first established him as a star.

Zidane played for five years in Serie A before making a record-breaking £50million move to Madrid, and he is obviously remembered very positively.

With good reason too. He won two Serie A titles during his time with Juventus and was unlucky not to win more.

He may also feel as if he has unfinished business in Turin. Zidane played in two Champions League finals for Juve but lost them both. As the Old Lady continue their pursuit of European glory, Zidane could be tempted to lead the way.

Paris Saint-Germain

Lionel Messi of PSG in action during the Champion's League Paris Saint Germain v Manchester City football match at Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris

If the modern game has taught us anything, it's that Paris Saint-Germain can afford just about anyone they want.

Last summer saw them attract the likes of Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos, why not Zidane too?

Despite his French roots, Zidane has no real affinity to PSG, having been born in the south of France and plying his trade with Cannes and Bordeaux.

However, if Zidane is feeling the pull of home then you cannot discount the biggest club that Ligue 1 has to offer, particularly when they are as wealthy as PSG.

Newcastle United

Newcastle United fan after takeover announced

Speaking of clubs who have a bit of money to spend, it's difficult to look past Newcastle United right now.

Their Saudi Arabian takeover has made them with the wealthiest owners in world soccer and they look ready to splash the cash on Tyneside.

Whether or not the effects of that wealth will land in time to attract Zidane for his next job is a different question entirely, of course.

The Magpies - who parted ways with Steve Bruce - have to get themselves out of some rather serious-looking relegation trouble first, and then they can start to lay the foundations for their new project.

Still, money talks and Zidane could be seduced the blank cheque offered to him by Newcastle United.


Ronald Koeman under pressure at Barcelona

Barcelona, like Manchester United, look like they might be forced into a managerial change this season.

They have some real financial difficulties to deal with and Ronald Koeman isn't doing much on the pitch to distract from them.

Barcelona are one of the most glamorous soccer clubs in the world, so you can never discount them from such discussions.

However, Zidane has genuine affinity with Barca's biggest and most bitter rivals, so there is little chance he'd want to risk his legendary status among the Real Madrid fans by making the move to Camp Nou.

In fact, even if Barcelona were at the very peak of their powers and spending, you could all but rule out Zidane ever taking that particular job.

Manchester City

Manchester City's manager Pep Guardiola is seen during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Manchester City

Pep Guardiola seems very settled at Manchester City, but things could change there within a couple of years.

The Spaniard has not previously been someone to stay in a job too long, with his intense commitment to the game putting him at serious risk of burnout.

He stayed five years at Barcelona and three at Bayern Munich, and rumours of a potential Manchester City exit have started to grow.

"After seven years on this team, I think I'm going to have a stop," Guardiola said in August. "I'm going to have to take a break, see what we've done."

That would coincide with his contract expiring in 2023, so it seems inevitable that Man City will be looking for a new manager then. Whether that is too long a wait for Zidane, though, very much depends on the Frenchman.

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