I thought I saw Luca in a training photo and now it's confirmed.

Real Madrid published their squad list for the United States pre-season tour and for the International Champions Cup, and the friendly against the MLS All-Stars side. The squad will travel to Los Angeles today and the first pre-season game is scheduled for Saturday, July 23rd, against Manchester United at 11pm CEST.

Real Madrid will play four friendly games in total during the US pre-season tour (if you want to call the game against Barcelona in Miami a friendly). Just five days after playing the last game of the pre-season tour against the MLS All-Star side on August 3rd, Real Madrid will once again face Manchester United, but this time in the UEFA Super Cup. So buckle up, because the season is starting shortly.

Goalkeepers: Navas, Casilla, Yáñez and Luca Zidane

Defenders: Carvajal, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo, Theo, Danilo, Quezada, Tejero, Achraf and Manu Hernando.

Midfielders: Kroos, Casemiro, Modric, Isco, Kovacic, Óscar and Franchu.

Forwards: Benzema, Bale, Lucas Vázquez, Morata and Dani Gómez.

As was expected, Vallejo, Marcos Llorente and Asensio weren't called up for the beginning of pre-season, because their season ended just 11 days ago due to representing Spain in the U21 EURO Championship in Poland. Cristiano Ronaldo, who was participating in the FIFA Confederations Cup, also wasn't called up and was given extended time off. And finally, Sergio Ramos was given a bit longer holiday, presumably to get in perfect shape for the UEFA Supercup.

Real Madrid decided to call up young players from their youth system, namely Achraf, Tejero, Quezada, and Luca Zidane from Castilla. Luca Zidane could try to present his case for the third first team goalkeeper, however, Tejero and Quezada's chances in the first team are looking slim. Both are most likely fighting for the starting left-back spot in Castilla, because rumours have it that Castilla are looking for a new right back.

Zidane and his technical staff also chose to reward some of the kids from Juvenil A (U19) - the youth team that won the treble this season. The spine of that team was called up: the captain Óscar (CM), Franchu (LW), Manu Hernando (CB) and Dani Gómez (ST).

However, it must be said that this list of 26 players could be soon expanded, as we expect Dani Ceballos to complete his transfer to Real Madrid in the coming days.

Our lovely man is feeling very chatty these days......
Zinedine Zidane has revealed that he held talks with Bordeaux this summer about the possibility of taking charge of the French outfit.

Zidane acted as assistant at Real Madrid last season, but was strongly linked with a return to France earlier in the summer.

The Frenchman has since taken charge of Real Madrid Castilla, but the former midfielder has said that his ultimate aim is to manage in the top flight.

"I had the chance to go to Bordeaux but I didn't do so because I wanted to coach Castilla and I jumped at the opportunity," Zidane told reporters at a press conference.

"I spoke to [Bordeaux President] Jean-Louis Triaud, who came to Madrid for discussions. He was very honest and told me there would not be many players coming in. I then made my decision and it's one I don't regret.

"I want to continue with Castilla this year and then we'll see. I'm ambitious and I'd like to coach a team in the top flight."

Zidane picked up his first win as Castilla boss at the weekend.

Go for it Zizou!
Zidane interested in France coaching role

Marseille (AFP) - Former France captain Zinedine Zidane, currently coach of the Real Madrid reserve side, admitted Tuesday he would consider a coaching job with his native France.

The former World Player of the Year worked as Carlo Ancelotti's assistant as Real won the Champions League and Copa del Rey last season and is following in the footsteps of Pep Guardiola by beginning his career in management in the Spanish third tier.

"I'm ambitious. Now I'm a coach I say to myself 'why not be national coach?'," Zidane, 42, said in an interview published Tuesday in the daily La Provence newspaper.

"I love the France team, I wore this jersey. That doesn't mean to say that I can be coach, but from the moment I went over to the other side of the fence it's obviously a possibility."

He added: "Now I'm coaching Real's young players. One thing at a time."

Capped 108 times, former World Cup and European championship winner Zidane retired from international football after the 2006 World Cup where France reached the final.

"Zizou" praised his former teammate Didier Deschamps, now the France coach.

"As a player he was a leader. As a coach, he hasn't changed. With Les Bleus he has managed to form a solid group. He's achieveing great things," added Zidane.

The Marseille native claimed the first win of his coaching career on Sunday when his young team Real Madrid Castilla won 3-1 at home against Trival Valderas.

Zizou leaves no doubt about his aspirations
There have been quite a few articles about Zizou's future plans. I think this article says it all.
BTW....his body language on the bench says a lot. He looks "ready" and has that fierce competitor look. Very focused.

The France legend says he is eager to make the step up and has paid tribute to Carlo Ancelotti and Florentino Perez for their guidance
Zinedine Zidane says he is ready to become a head coach after spending time as Carlo Ancelotti's assistant at Real Madrid.

The former France international, who was named sporting director at Santiago Bernabeu in 2011, opted to become Ancelotti's No.2 when the Italian replaced Jose Mourinho in the dugout during the summer.

Following his first six months as Ancelotti's right-hand man, Zidane insists he now feels ready to try his luck at the helm of a side, and has vowed to build his first team into an efficient attacking unit.

"I'm excited to give everything, to repay the confidence I've been given. Above all, I'm a competitor, it's in my blood," he told L'Equipe.

"My team will be balanced but lead by the attack. Their game will be simple but attacking.

"My trust is not easy to win, but when I give it, it's so that people can use it.

"My ambition is to continue creating and giving. I know I'm ready for this, to transmit this, to be useful. And I will give more if I coach a team.

"I know my limits, my desires. I want to see if I'm capable of reaching the summit of my ambition. But I also want to learn, to work, to move forward."

Zidane, who won eight trophies as a player with Madrid following his transfer from Juventus, went on to pay tribute to both Ancelotti and club president Florentino Perez for their guidance during his time at the club.

"For the moment I'm the assistant of Madrid, of Ancelotti, who is a great coach. I learn at his side," he added.

"It's the same with the president. I'm lucky to have a relationship built on respect and affection with the person who brought me from Turin. Without him, I never would have come to Madrid."

If he does get a team....I wonder where he will go??????

Zizou is back to scouting for Senor Perez. Please...please....please.....some photos!!!
Zidane watches Bale in action......where are you Zizou...on the the VIP section???? No photos

Zidane watches Bale in action against Lyon as Real keep up the chase for Welshman.

By Simon Jones

PUBLISHED: 17:30 EST, 22 February 2013 | UPDATED: 18:07 EST, 22 February 2013

Real Madrid director of football Zinedine Zidane watched Gareth Bale on Thursday night as the Spanish champions maintain their pursuit of the Tottenham midfielder.

Bale is Madrid's number one transfer target for the summer and the 23-year-old is expected to follow former team-mate Luka Modric to the Bernabeu once his £55million valuation is met.

Bayern Munich and Barcelona also want Bale but his price tag is prohibitive considering their self-imposed budget constraints.

Bale played 90 minutes at Lyon as Tottenham progressed in the Europa League thanks to Mousa Dembele's late equaliser.

Bale has struck seven goals in his last six games for club and country, with 21 goals from 38 for the season in all competitions. Madrid are wary that Cristiano Ronaldo may yet leave this summer with Paris St Germain and Manchester United monitoring developments and Bale's capture would help appease demand for a star name.

They have monitored his progress for the past three seasons. Zidane's views are highly regarded and he has helped to recruit some of Madrid's brightest stars.
The France legend saw Bale miss from close range during the match.

Duga's Comments....Is this "sour Grapes?" Does Blanc feel his job his threatened?
Dugarry: Zidane should avoid coaching
News Date: 21st February 2013

Christophe Dugarry and Zinedine Zidane played together for Bordeaux and France
French World Cup-winner Christophe Dugarry says he would advise his former international team-mate Zinedine Zidane to steer clear of a career in coaching. Zidane, 40, has occupied a number of roles from presidential advisor to ambassador at former side Real Madrid since ending his playing career at the Spanish club in 2006.

However, having started the process of gaining his UEFA coaching badges in France, media reports from Spain have claimed Zidane will venture into the dug-out for the first time by taking charge of the nine-time European champions' Under-18 B team next season.

Dugarry, a close friend of Zidane during their time as members of France's victorious 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000 sides, told RMC radio it is not a decision he can agree with, although he can understand his motivation.

"If he asked my advice, I wouldn't advise him to become a coach," the 40-year-old, who has worked as a pundit since hanging up his boots, said. "[But] there are things that you feel deep down inside and that you want to do. When Laurent Blanc decided to coach, we often bumped into each other at golf and he told me he wanted to see if he was capable of doing it.

"When you've had a great playing career, you want to see if you can handle a squad, experience more exceptional emotions so why not? Everyone has to see what they're capable of doing, and have a feeling for it. I don't have that. If Zizou feels that deep down, why not? He loves football - he has a real vision of the sport."

After taking courses to gain a qualification to be 'a general manager of a professional sports club' at a respected French university, Zidane started the process of gaining his coaching badges last year. In an interview with France Football magazine in October, he made it clear he had thought long and hard about his new career direction.

He said: "I asked myself the question: 'Do you want to coach?' And the answer is: 'Yes, I want to'. I said to myself: 'Now I want to do something different'. Sporting director or club official is not exactly the same thing. I took my time to arrive at that decision. It's been six years since I stopped playing. The period of reflection was long."

Blanc had responded to those comments by saying: "I do not know if I can picture Zidane as a national coach, but I would like it if the people of football were more committed to the sport than the television world.

Finally a bit of news!

Wish I could post the photo.....I could think of a very funny caption! LOL!

NY Times photo
Don't know how to move an article to the site but there is a lovely photo of Zizou in the "Lens" section of the NY Times Global edition. The other photos are stunning as well but Zizou's makes you sigh. Enjoy!


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