Zinedine Zidane 'rejects $80m-a-year offer' to coach Saudi club Al Nassr: report

Zinedine Zidane 'rejects $80m-a-year offer' to coach Saudi club Al Nassr: report
Zinedine Zidane, who has not managed a team since ending a second spell at Real Madrid in 2021, has reportedly turned down a two-year deal with the Saudi football club that Cristiano Ronaldo currently plays for.
2 min read
26 May, 2023
Zinedine Zidane is widely considered a footballing icon, both as player and coach [Getty]

French football legend Zinedine Zidane has reportedly rejected an approximately US$80 million a year deal to join Saudi Pro League team Al Nassr as manager, French sports media reported on Thursday.

Zidane was offered a two-year, €150 million (approximately US$160 million) contract to manage the Riyadh-based club for which Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo currently plays, sports news site FootMercato said, citing unspecified sources.

The former Real Madrid coach was reportedly Al Nassr’s first choice to replace fellow Frenchman Rudi Garcia, who was sacked in April following the team’s poor performance and rumours of dressing room tensions with some of his players.

Al Nassr has in recent years sought some of European football's biggest stars, including Cristiano Ronaldo who joined the club on an estimated two-year, €200 million deal in January.

A move to Al Nassr by Zidane would have seen him reunited with Ronaldo, who he managed while head coach at Real Madrid.

Zidane, 50, has not coached a team since abruptly leaving Real Madrid for a second time in 2021, following a trophy-less season and speculation that club President Florentino Perez did not have enough trust in him.

The former French captain broke records during his first stint as Real Madrid manager, leading the team to three Champions League titles in a row. It was the first time ever that a manager had led a team to three consecutive trophies in the top European competition.

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Last month, reports emerged that Zidane could make a return to his former club for a third spell as manager, despite current boss Carlos Ancelotti’s contract lasting until 2024.

There were also rumours that Zidane, could join the French national team, Chelsea FC and Paris Saint-Germain as a coach.

The Marseille-born Zidane is of Algerian descent. He is considered to be one of the greatest football players of all time and a French football icon.

The former attacking midfielder has won a multitude of trophies with clubs and country, including the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

He also famously played for Real Madrid during its 'Galacticos' era in the 2000s, alongside the likes of Brazilian forward Ronaldo and former England captain David Beckham.