Saturday, June 25

Zinedine Zidane: ‘Never say never to PSG job’

Zinedine Zidane has refused to rule out taking over at Paris Saint-Germain in the future but insisted his focus remains on the French national team.

The former Real Madrid boss was tentatively linked with the position at PSG this summer but, despite revealing a desire to return to management, it’s Nice’s Christophe Galtier who is expected to take over from Mauricio Pochettino.

Instead, Zidane’s focus is on France, admitting to L’Equipe that he has ‘unfinished business’ with Les Bleus.

“I want to come full circle with the France team,” he said. “I knew this France team as a player, and that’s the best thing that ever happened to me. It’s the pinnacle. The France team is firmly rooted in my head.

“I do not know [if he will replace Didier Deschamps]. If it has to happen, it will happen, then or not then. Today, a team is in place, but if the opportunity comes next, then I’ll be there. It’s not up to me, but my deep desire is there. The France team is the most beautiful thing there is.”

He added: “When you are given the France team shirt, it’s special. My first call-ups were special. There were incredible players like [Eric] Cantona, [David] Ginola and [Laurent] Blanc. When you get a taste for Les Bleus, it’s magnificent. It’s so strong, powerful. The France team is everything to me.”

That being said, Zidane made a point of stressing that fans should not rule out the idea of him taking over at PSG further down the line.

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“Never say never,” he said when asked if his Marseille roots could impact a move to PSG. “Especially when you are a coach in today’s world. But the question is moot. It’s irrelevant.

“When I was a player, I had the choice of almost every club. As a coach, there aren’t 50 clubs I can go to. There are two or three possibilities. This is the current reality. Coaches have much fewer choices than players. If I go back to a club, it is to win. That’s why I can’t go anywhere. For other reasons, too, I might not be able to go everywhere.

“The language, for example. Some conditions make things more difficult. When people say to me: ‘Do you want to go to Manchester?’, I understand English but I’m not a master of it. I know there are coaches who go to clubs without speaking the language, but I work differently.

“To win, many elements come into play. It’s a global context. I know what I need to win so, of course, I need at least this, this and this. I want everything on my side to optimise the chances of victory.”

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