Real Madrid confirmed Julen Lopetegui as their new coach on Tuesday, releasing an official announcement on the eve of the World Cup.
As seen in the tweet below, the current Spain boss will become Zinedine Zidane’s successor after the conclusion of the tournament in Russia, signing a three-year deal with the reigning European champions.
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While he will have big shoes to fill given Zidane guided Real Madrid to three consecutive Champions League triumphs, a La Liga title and several other trophies, it’s claimed that he could use his time with the Spain squad this summer as a way of building on the Madrid contingent.
As per Mundo Deportivo, it’s suggested that Lopetegui could try to convince Thiago Alcantara and Alvaro Odriozola to join Los Blancos, with both players already being linked with a move to the Bernabeu.
In truth, it’s difficult to see the Spanish tactician focusing on anything other than guiding La Roja to a deep run in the World Cup, with transfer talk the last thing on his mind with such a big job and opportunity ahead.
Nevertheless, the report suggests that Lopetegui could take the opportunity to try and convince Thiago and Odriozola to become part of his plans at club level in the future too.
Odriozola is arguably the more important potential addition, as aside from the fact that the 22-year-old continues to impress for Real Sociedad and Spain, Madrid have a real lack of depth at right-back as seen when Dani Carvajal is out injured.
As for Thiago, he would undoubtedly add further technical quality and class in midfield, but Lopetegui will already have the likes of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro at his disposal and so it’s debatable as to whether he’s needed.
? @julenlopetegui#WelcomeLopetegui | #RealMadrid pic.twitter.com/5eYmFEh6Ua
— #CHAMP13NS ???? (@realmadriden) June 12, 2018