Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has been tipped as a possible replacement for Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid should the Frenchman leave his post at the Bernabeu any time soon.
Pochettino's Spurs team comprehensively beat Real 3-1 in the Champions League this week and the Daily Mail now claims that the Argentine is the 'number one target' for Los Blancos president Florentino Perez should Zidane not last.
Despite winning back-to-back Champions League titles and delivering what has become rare La Liga glory, Zidane is facing something of a mini crisis.
His team has struggled this season and already trails Barcelona by eight points domestically, while the Champions League group stage has not been the usual cakewalk as a result of dropping five points against Tottenham.
Barring a collapse from Spurs in the final two games, Real will not top the group and will go into the Last 16 draw unseeded. That will likely present them with a much tougher opponent.
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Zidane was only recently named Men's Coach of the Year at the annual FIFA Best Award ceremony in London. He is a legend at Real and has deep ties to the club as a player, advisor, coach and now head coach. Perez even congratulated him on reaching 100 games recently with an open letter published in Spanish sports daily Marca. But elite football waits for no man.
Carlo Ancelotti was sacked by Real just a year after bringing the elusive Decima to the club in 2014, paying the price for failing to repeat his feats the following season.
If Zidane cannot retain at least one of the trophies he won last season, speculation will begin to build, no matter how unfair. And should Perez open the trapdoor, going full throttle after Pochettino is the only logical step.