Zinedine Zidane has swept up most trophies on offer since taking the managerial reins at Real Madrid in January 2016, but now he has a gong for his own mantelpiece.
The Frenchman was handed the 2017 Best FIFA Men’s Coach award at Monday’s ceremony in London. He was given the honour after guiding Los Blancos to their first La Liga title in five years, and completing the feat of winning back-to-back Champions League conquests – becoming the first manager to collect consecutive medals in Europe’s elite competition since Arrigo Sacchi’s AC Milan in 1988-89 and 1989-90.
Zidane beat Massimiliano Allegri, who led Juventus to the Scudetto and Coppa Italia in 2016-17, and Antonio Conte, orchestrator of a record 30-win season with Chelsea while en route to the Premier League title, to the decoration.
Zidane was beaten to the best coach award by Claudio Ranieri last year, the veteran who sensationally shunned 5,000-1 odds to lead Leicester City to the Premier League’s summit in 2015-16. But while the affable Italian has since moved on – he’s now handling Nantes in Ligue 1 – Zidane’s pursuit of top prizes continued to be relentless.
The retired World Cup-winning midfielder claims that he’s signed a contract extension following his successes at the club’s helm, but has been coy about revealing its duration. Reports suggest the new terms tie him to the Bernabeu until 2020.
Nine matches into the new La Liga campaign, Real Madrid is five points adrift of archrival Barcelona after early-season draws with Valencia and Levante, and a shock home defeat to Real Betis in September. Los Blancos are also currently joint-top with Tottenham Hotspur in Champions League Group H, and are preparing for Thursday’s trip to nearby third-tier side CF Fuenlabrada in the Copa del Rey.
FIFA World Coach of the Year winners:
|2010||Jose Mourinho||Inter Milan|
|2012||Vincente del Bosque||Spain|
|2013||Jupp Heynckes||Bayern Munich|
The Best FIFA Football Coach winners:
|2016||Claudio Ranieri||Leicester City|
|2017||Zinedine Zidane||Real Madrid|