MADRID, November 22, 2010 (AFP) – French great Zinedine Zidane has expressed his enthusiasm about working more closely with the first-team squad at Real Madrid.
The three-time FIFA World Player of the Year, who played for Real for five years between 2001 and 2006, will on Monday start work as an advisor to president Florentio Perez on first-team affairs.
"I’m happy to be able to get closer to the club and to the team," Zidane said in an interview with Real’s official website published on Sunday.
"It’s a role that’s taking shape gradually. It’s not like a new position but for me it’s as good as. I will try to work with the team, positioning myself between the president and the squad.
"I’ll be closer to the team. I’ll travel with the squad for Champions League matches. Day-to-day I’ll be with the team at Valdebebas (Real’s training centre).
"It’s four years since I left football (as a player) and it’s the right time to seize another opportunity to be closer to what I like, which is football."
Zidane’s re-positioning will bring him into closer contact with Real coach Jose Mourinho and the Portuguese tactician welcomed the move.
"We all wanted this moment to arrive and his presence alone will give us lots of positive things," said Mourinho.