It didn’t turn out that way with Zidane quitting in the summer and Madrid’s season imploding in failure but that was all forgotten at the Bernabeu as Real rolled over an awful Celta Vigo team on Zizou’s return to the dugout.
There were 65,000 to welcome him back – the gate would have been 20,000 down on that had he not returned – and aside from one ‘Florentino Guilty’ banner that blamed the president and twice stewards tried to take down it was all positive vibes and forward thinking.
Zidane was given a huge ovation and although this win does nothing to save Madrid’s season it suggests the club can be got back on the right track by Zidane, whose name was sang by supporters on the final whistle.
Everyone will be happy. Everyone, except Thibaut Courtois maybe. He was dropped as Keylor Navas returned to the first team as did Marcelo and Isco who had both been sidelined by previous boss Santiago Solari.
Goals from Isco and Gareth Bale secured all three points for Los Blancos on Saturday and afterwards Zidane confirmed in his post-match interview that he will be looking to use his full squad between now and the end of the season.
“Nobody can take away from these players what they have achieved in the past.
“I have a squad of 23 to 25 players in my squad, and I will use them all.
“Everybody showed today what they are capable of, including Keylor, Isco, Marcelo and Marco Asensio, who have not played as much this season.”
Real have 10 La Liga games left this season, with a second place finish likely to be Zidane’s priority, with Barcelona already seven points clear at the top, with rivals Atletico Madrid also in the hunt for second.