Julen Lopetegui: 5 Things To Know About The New Real Madrid Coach
Real Madrid surprised many when they named Julen Lopetegui as their preferred replacement for their erstwhile manager, Zinedine Zidane who threw in the towel barely four days of winning an unprecedented third successive Champions League trophy.
Though the name Lopetegui may not ring a bell like those of Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola or even Luis Enrique, the Spanish coach cannot be deemed a mismatch for Real Madrid as his record also speaks volume
Here Are 5 Things To Know About The New Real Madrid Coach:
- He was sacked barely 24 hours to the commencement of the World Cup
There have been handful of scenarios when a coach qualifies a particular team for the World Cup and he is denied the opportunity of taking them to the Mundial.
The sack usually comes months or at worst weeks before the tournament kicks off.
However, in a rather bizarre fashion, Lopetegui was sacked hours to the commencement of the World Cup by Spain FA; that is a record but not an enviable one.
He was a bench warmer at Real Madrid
Lopetegui was on the books of Real Madrid for two seasons between 1988-1991 but he could only make one appearance for Los Blancos.
The single appearance was a 3–3 away draw against Atlético Madrid as Real was already crowned league champions.
After his playing days were behind him, the Spaniard worked as a scout for the first team.
Lopetegui has played for FC Barcelona
After ending his stint with Real Madrid as a player, Julen Lopetegui moved to Logroñes where he became the club's first choice custodian.
Making 107 appearances in three seasons, Lopetugui impressed another giant of Spanish football and was signed by FC Barcelona in 1994.
He was relegated to the bench again but was able to get five appearances with the Catalan club.
Lopetegui equals Enrique's record
Lopetegui will become only the second ever manager after Luis Enrique to manage Real Madrid/FC Barcelona after playing for both the sides.
'Lopetegui has the password for De Gea'
This revelation will be music to the ears of the Real Madrid faithful.
The club's long-term goalkeeping target and arguably the best in the business, David De Gea shares a close bond with the new manager.
If you connect the dots, we may well see De Gea in Real Madrid colours after the World Cup.