They say never go back, but that phrase doesn’t apply to the legendary Zinedine Zidane.
An icon at the Santiago Bernabeu as a player, Zidane replaced Rafael Benitez as the club’s manager in 2016 and led Los Blancos to three Champions League wins in a row, an unprecedented achievement, alongside a La Liga title before departing in 2018.
The Frenchman returned in March 2019 when spells in charge for Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari both ended in disaster. He turned things around and won La Liga the following season, though the end of the 2020/21 season brought a conclusion to his second stint in charge.
A dramatic final day in La Liga that campaign saw Real fall short of city rivals Atletico Madrid by two points in the title race, ending the term with no silverware.
Here’s a look at some of Zizou’s best moments as Real Madrid boss during his second term in the job.
Having been incredibly successful the first time around, Zidane was reappointed in March 2019 when Real finally decided to give Solari the boot.
Results were pretty mixed towards the end of the league season, but his first game back did yield three points as Isco and Gareth Bale scored in a 2-0 victory over Celta Vigo.
Only four more victories came in their next ten games as Real finished the 2018/19 campaign in third place.
A ten-game winning run helped Real Madrid go on to be crowned league champions in 2019/20.
While Los Blancos only lost three times all season, a few too many draws saw Barcelona top the table at times during the campaign.
However, that incredible run of form towards the backend of the year – which was preceded not long before by a 2-0 victory over Barça – helped Real hold off their Clasico rivals, eventually finishing five points ahead of them after the COVID-19 enforced hiatus.
Real Madrid defeated their local rivals Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa final held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia back in January 2020.
After a goalless affair, Zidane’s side won on penalties to secure the trophy and set up another celebratory presentation – something he has become accustomed to during his relatively short managerial career.
As the Real Madrid boss, there can’t be many better feelings than winning at the home of arch rivals Barcelona.
In October 2020, Zidane’s men registered a 3-1 victory at Camp Nou courtesy of goals from Federico Valverde, Sergio Ramos and Luka Modric.
Los Blancos did the double over Ronald Koeman’s side but a victory behind enemy lines always feels sweeter.
Despite having to name a makeshift defence, Zidane masterminded a Champions League quarter final victory over Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool in 2021.
Marco Asensio’s goal was sandwiched in between a brace from Vinicius Junior to put the La Liga giants in a commanding position ahead of the second leg, from which they safely progressed to the last four of the competition.