Ever since Zinedine Zidane gave the shock announcement that he would be leaving Real Madrid – only five days after winning an unprecedented three Champions Leagues in a row – there has been wild hysteria around who would replace the Frenchman. Real Murcia’s President Victor Galvez appears to have shed light on the matter for everyone. During a press conference today, where Galvez was speaking about Real Murcia’s current affairs, he mentioned that Guti (Real Madrid’s current under 19’s coach) was out of the running for the Real Murcia managerial position.
In a time where there was much diliberation around who was going to replace Zidane, it appears confirmation has come from an unexpected source. Galvez left nothing to the imagination as he unequivocally stated that Guti was going to be the next manager at the Bernabeu:
“Guti is going to coach Real Madrid so he cannot coach Murcia. He was the coach I wanted here.”
Having made his plans clear that he wanted the La Fabrica graduate to take over at his own Real Murcia for the forthcoming season after José María Salmerón was relieved of his duties; the president has in turn, confirmed Real Madrid’s new manager. After so many rumours surrounding the vacancy, with the likes of Antonio Conte, Arsene Wenger and Maurcio Pochettino all strongly linked, it now appears the answer to Madrid’s problem comes from within.
A Madrid native, Guti came through the youth system at the club and went on to play in a Galactico generation where he solidified his place in the team winning; three Champions Leagues, five La Ligas, four Copa del Reys along with a Turkish Cup triumph in his solitary year away from Real Madrid, with Besiktas. With such an outstanding playing career behind him, Guti should automatically demand the respect of the Real Madrid players. There is a growing trend in world football at present, where previous top-players go into management and find it a lot easier to get their message across to the players because of an automatic respect they get.
The most recent and impressive example of this is Zinedine Zidane. Regarded by some as the best player of his generation, Zidane was automatically able to demand the respect of players of the ilk of Cristiano Roanldo and Sergio Ramos. Pep Guardiola is another example where a top ex-player comes into the first team as manager with little experience but man-manages the team to perfection. The players at Real Madrid will look up to Guti in a similar way, and with the coaching experience he has behind him with the under 19’s, it should stand him in good stead going forward.
Comparing Guti to other potential candidates (assessed HERE), he embodies the personality of the club and the culture it represents. Accepted, I believed he was going to be seen as ‘one for the future’ due to his lack of experience. His character is in sharp contrast to the likes of Antonio Conte and Maurzio Sarri where their hot-headed nature and ability to lash out harks back to Jose Mourinho’s time at the club. This idea goes completely against what the perfect Real Madrid manager should be. Like Vicente del Bosque and Zidane, Guti represents a calming influence on the sideline. As a top ex-player, he knows how to get through the difficult stages and players will listen when he speaks.
An interesting year ahead awaits for Guti, pending official confirmation from the club. Pressure to retain the Champions League and wrestle La Liga back from the tight grip of Barcelona will be quickly building for the 41 year old.