Zinedine Zidane has sensationally quit as manager of Real Madrid .
The Frenchman announced the news at a press conference on Thursday afternoon , where he was joined by a visibly moved Real president Florentino Perez.
Zidane becomes the first boss to leave of his own accord in Perez’s reign at Real, which spans 15 years across two separate spells.
His decision comes just days after he guided Real to their third successive Champions League victory, having beaten Liverpool 3-1 in the final in Kiev.
Here’s a full transcript of what both men said.
Zidane: I love this club, I love the president.
He gave me the opportunity to come as a player and now manager and I am eternally grateful.
But we have to change.
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Perez: After winning the Champions League, the decision was unexpected.
It is a sad day for me, the fans and the players.
But he knows I wanted him as a player and as a manager.
I wanted him to stay forever and I wanted to convince him to stay.
But I know it was his final decision.
All I want to do is remind him that this club is his home and family.
Perez: I went to his house yesterday to see if he was prepared.
He told me that he was convinced he wanted to go.
I want to thank him for his commitment and passion to Real Madrid.
His behaviour has always been an example for all and representative of Real.
I don’t want this to be a goodbye but a ‘see you soon’.
I have no doubt he will come back soon.
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Zidane: It can be a ‘see you later’. Madrid has given me everything.
I will be close to this club all my life.
But the decision, for many, doesn’t make sense. But it does to me.
It is the moment to make a change.
I think it is the right decision for everyone.
I have to thank the fans for all their support and love.
We have had complicated moments of the season, when you are not at your best, the fans push you and that made us better.
There are really beautiful moments, ending in a spectacular moment winning the third Champions League, but there are hard moments too. I think it’s the right time.
Zidane: I think the players need a change but I should thank them because at the end of the day it’s them that fight out there and this is a club of very high expectations.
We always want more and more, I couldn’t ask for more from these players but now is the time for them to have a different voice in the changing room.
It’s not as simple as just staying. I think it would be difficult to keep winning if I stayed.
Zidane: The squad already knows. I’ve not talked to them all individually but they all know.
I’ve sent a message to all the squad and I’ve spoken to Sergio Ramos.
As always as a person and captain, we have lived a lot together, he respects my decision. He wished me luck.
He is a leader, a captain and it has been a pleasure to share three more years with him.
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Zidane: I’m not going to coach another team right now. I’m not looking for another team.
Zidane: The most beautiful moment was when the president brought me to play for this great club.
If there’s one as a coach, it was winning La Liga. For me that was the top.
This year the worst was losing the game against Leganés in the second leg of the Copa del Rey.
I won’t use the word but you know it.
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