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25 Aug, 2019 17:52

Jose Mourinho ‘ready to step in’ if Real Madrid sack Zidane – reports

Jose Mourinho ‘ready to step in’ if Real Madrid sack Zidane – reports

Jose Mourinho is keeping a watchful eye on the fortunes of Real Madrid as he continues to plot a return to club management with a return to the Santiago Bernabeu high on his wish list, according to reports from Spain.

Mourinho has been absent from coaching since being sacked by Manchester United in December and for the first time in almost 20 years has entered into a new football season without being tied to a club.

The hugely successful Portuguese has spoken of his desire to return to the day-to-day management of a football club and despite reportedly turning down a number of offers in recent months, including one from his former club Benfica, it seems a return to the Spanish capital would be an attractive proposition for the 'Special One.' 

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A report from Spanish outlet AS states that Mourinho is keeping tabs on Real Madrid's start to the season under Zidane, who returned to the capital just 10 months after leaving the club following their 2018 win against Liverpool in the Champions League final. 

Zidane has secured four points from a possible six in the opening fixtures of the new La Liga campaign, but memories of the team's misfires last season which saw managers Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari cast aside amid disjointed performances are likely fresh in Mourinho's mind as he navigates the job market. 

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Real Madrid added big money recruits Eden Hazard (who worked with Mourinho at Chelsea) and Serbian frontman Luka Jovic to their lineup as the task of replacing Cristiano Ronaldo's goals continues, and any continuation of the poor form the club displayed during pre-season would likely pile pressure on Zidane's shoulders.

Mourinho's first spell in charge of Real Madrid yielded La Liga, Copa del Rey and Spanish SuperCup titles, but was also mired in controversy. In 2011 he was accused of gouging the eye of then-Barcelona assistant coach Tito Vilanova, just one of several run-ins he had with the Spanish football authorities. 

The Portuguese is known to still enjoy a good relationship with Real president Florentino Pérez.