Juventus' elimination from the Champions League spelled the end for Maurizio Sarri and the start of a new era under Andrea Pirlo.

Despite leading the Bianconeri to a ninth straight Scudetto in 2019-20, Sarri was fired after Juve crashed out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage to Lyon on Friday.

Pirlo was at the heart of Juve's brilliant midfield during the start of their Serie A dominance, winning four Scudetti, the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana twice during a four-year stint that ended when he moved to New York City in 2015.

A week after returning to Juve as their Under-23 boss, Pirlo was handed the reins of the first team ahead of the 2020-21 campaign.

He is not the first club legend to go back and manage a team they played for, though, and we have taken a look at the biggest successes and failures.

HITS

Pep Guardiola

After leaving Barcelona as a player in 2001, Guardiola returned as the Barca B boss in 2007 before being promoted to head coach of the first team a year later. Over four years in charge at Camp Nou he led the Blaugrana to 14 trophies, including three LaLiga titles and two Champions League crowns. Success has continued to come Guardiola's way with Bayern Munich and Manchester City.

Zinedine Zidane

World Cup winner Zidane was part of Real Madrid's 'Galacticos' in the early 2000s and he finished his playing career at the Santiago Bernabeu. Like Guardiola, he returned to oversee the second team before stepping up to the top job after the departure of Rafael Benitez in January 2016. Zidane went on to win an unprecedented three successive Champions League titles with Madrid before stepping away in May 2018, only to return 10 months later. He has already won LaLiga and the Supercopa de Espana in his second stint.

Antonio Conte

In 13 seasons as a player for Juventus, Conte won almost everything there is to win – five league titles, the Coppa Italia, the Champions League and the UEFA Cup. He moved into management two years after retiring and worked his way back to Juve after spells with Arezzo, Bari, Atalanta and Siena. Juve won three straight Scudetti under Conte – the start of their ongoing dominance – before he accepted the Italy job in 2014. Pirlo will have to get the better of his former coach Conte, now at Inter, if he is to maintain the Bianconeri's run of titles.

Roberto Di Matteo

Di Matteo accepted the top job at Chelsea in 2012, having previously been assistant to Andre Villas-Boas. Di Matteo – who won the FA Cup twice with the Blues as a player – went on to lift two trophies as Chelsea boss, including their first Champions League title with a penalty shoot-out win over Bayern Munich, but he was discarded early in the following season.

MISSES

Alan Shearer

Record Premier League goalscorer, Newcastle United legend and lethal England striker – Shearer's playing career was full of success. When he retired in 2006, Shearer moved into television as a pundit, but when the Magpies came calling in 2009 he stepped in to try and save them from relegation. Sadly for Shearer he was unsuccessful, his eight-game reign ending in Newcastle slipping out of the top flight after a 1-0 defeat to Aston Villa on the final day.

Filippo Inzaghi

Employing former players as head coaches had previously worked well for Milan – Fabio Capello and Carlo Ancelotti proving particularly successful. When the Rossoneri turned to Inzaghi in 2014 after Clarence Seedorf's brief tenure, the move was therefore no surprise. However, the former striker – who won eight major trophies at the club in his playing days – flopped, winning just 14 of his 40 matches in charge as Milan finished 10th, their worst league position in 17 years.

Thierry Henry

Henry made his name at Monaco after breaking into the first team in 1994, the forward going on to become a world champion and a Premier League icon with Arsenal. After a period as youth coach with the Gunners, Henry was named as Belgium boss Roberto Martinez's assistant. Permanent roles with Bordeaux and Aston Villa were mooted, but in October 2018 Henry chose Monaco. He lasted just three months, losing 11 of his 20 matches in charge across all competitions before being replaced by Leonardo Jardim, the man he had succeeded.

Juan Jose Lopez

One of the most decorated players in River Plate history, having won seven league titles in an 11-year spell, Lopez was a popular appointment after making a strong impact in his second period as caretaker manager in 2010. However, he subsequently presided over a poor 2011 Clausura campaign, forcing River into a play-off against Belgrano, who won 3-1 on aggregate. It was the first time River dropped out of the top tier, sparking riots which left many people injured.

Maurizio Sarri was like an uncomfortable guest at Juventus and his sacking was not a surprise, Alessio Tacchinardi says.

Sarri was dismissed on Saturday following Juve's Champions League elimination at the hands of Lyon less than 24 hours earlier.

The 61-year-old secured Juve's ninth Serie A title in a row in his only season in charge but lost the Coppa Italia final to Napoli, while problems instilling his style into the squad had prompted concerns about his long-term suitability to the role.

In that regard, Tacchinardi does not believe it was simply Friday's 2-1 win over Lyon - which saw the Ligue 1 side progress to the Champions League quarter-finals on away goals - that forced Juve to make a change.

Tacchinardi also feels Juve's squad planning left Sarri short-handed, with 21-year-old striker Marco Olivieri having been thrown on in the closing minutes for his Champions League debut as they desperately sought a third goal.

"I hadn't received any signals from Turin, but I don't think this defeat was necessary for Sarri to be sacked," the former midfielder, who won six Serie A titles and the 1996 Champions League with the Bianconeri, told TMW Radio.

"He always seemed like a guest who did not feel at ease. At Napoli, he was a leader.

"There were many players in a precarious condition yesterday. Juve won officially but the only won who actually won was [Cristiano] Ronaldo.

"With all due respect to Olivieri, to think Juve let someone like [Mario] Mandzukic go makes you think."

Real Madrid head coach and former Juve midfielder Zinedine Zidane is considered one of the favourites to replace Sarri, along with Lazio boss Simone Inzaghi and former Tottenham man Mauricio Pochettino.

There is also speculation Italy coach Roberto Mancini could be offered the position.

"Between Mancini and Zidane, I'd prefer the Frenchman," Tacchinardi said. "He knows Juve and knows how to be respected, but Mancini would be okay, too. I think the national team coach could come."

Juventus have decided their Maurizio Sarri experiment has not worked and for the second time in as many seasons the Bianconeri are on the hunt for a new head coach.

Sarri was the man chosen to succeed Massimiliano Allegri ahead of the 2019-20 campaign, an appointment that seems a lifetime ago in a season interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The former Napoli boss steered Juve to a ninth straight Serie A title, but the unconvincing nature of that triumph meant the Scudetto alone was never likely to be enough to convince the club's hierarchy Sarri would be the man to achieve the ultimate goal of winning the Champions League.

They fell short in Europe on Friday night, with Juve failing to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit to Ligue 1 side Lyon in the Champions League last 16, a 2-1 win on the night meaning they exited on the away goals ruling.

With Sarri gone, we take a look at some of the prime contenders to take over at the Italian champions.

MAURICIO POCHETTINO

An easy link, or a case of ideal timing? Pochettino has been out of work since being sacked by Tottenham in November 2019. That relationship soured towards the end but should not overshadow his achievements with Spurs, including taking them to a Champions League final. The Argentine coach was also linked with the Bianconeri a year ago, though now there is no need to negotiate a compensation package with another club. With a shorter turnaround than usual before a new season, the 48-year-old is available for Juve, should they want someone in place quickly.

SIMONE INZAGHI

Sarri was let go despite winning Serie A, but there was a period when Lazio looked like ending their Scudetto dominance. Former striker Inzaghi led the Rome side to the Coppa Italia last year and has twice thwarted Juve in the Supercoppa Italiana in his four years at the helm. Although their title challenge fell away after the restart, Inzaghi earned Lazio a spot in the Champions League proper for the first time since 2007-08.

ZINEDINE ZIDANE

In his first full season back in the Santiago Bernabeu hotseat, the France great led Real Madrid to a first LaLiga title since the 2016-17 campaign. But after being knocked out of the Champions League last 16 by Manchester City and with Madrid's reputation for chaos, Zidane's future is perhaps not 100 per cent locked in. It would still be a huge surprise to see Zidane depart the Spanish capital, though if he did, perhaps a return to Juve – where he starred in his playing days before joining Madrid – may be tempting. With three straight Champions League wins to his name from 2016 to 2018, his proven pedigree may appeal to Juve who are so desperate to land Europe's most coveted prize.

ANTONIO CONTE

Could Juventus turn to the man who sparked their run of nine successive Serie A titles? A once mighty midfield force for the Bianconeri, coach Conte led Juventus to three straight Scudetti before leaving to become Italy boss in 2014. After spells with the Azzurri and Chelsea, Conte has wound up at Inter, so it might take an audacious raid on their Serie A rivals for Juventus to be reunited with their former boss. Yet amid mixed fortunes in his first year at San Siro, there are some who think Conte could be on the lookout for a new job sooner rather than later.

PAULO SOUSA

A double winner with Juve in 1994-95 and a member of the team that won the Champions League a season later, Sousa has the advantage of a prior connection with the club but should be considered an outside shot. He has enjoyed a nomadic coaching career that has included stops at Leicester City, Swansea City, Basel and Fiorentina but has failed to inspire in his current post at Bordeaux, where his win percentage is just 30.2.

Zinedine Zidane moved to stamp out any speculation over his future on Friday, insisting he will be the Real Madrid coach next season.

Madrid's 2019-20 campaign finally came to an end at the Etihad Stadium with a 2-1 defeat to Manchester City in the Champions League – Los Blancos exiting the competition with a 4-2 aggregate loss.

The club do have the league title to show for the campaign, and it is their first LaLiga crown since 2017.

Asked if he planned to be in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu in 2020-21, Zidane gave a defiant response.

"Well, I'm here, I'm Madrid's coach until something happens which is out of the ordinary. I'm here, of course," he told a news conference.

"You don't have to think anything. I am the coach of Madrid, and that's it. 

"There are no more questions to ask in this regard. Now we are all going to rest and we will return to have a great season."

Raphael Varane's error gifted Raheem Sterling an early opener in Manchester, though Karim Benzema's excellent header gave Madrid hope midway through the first half.

However, their chances of progressing to the quarter-finals were dealt a fatal blow in the 68th minute – Gabriel Jesus pouncing on a second Varane calamity to seal the win for City.

Zidane, though, is adamant his team must be proud of their achievements this term.

"We need to be proud. I'm certainly very proud of what we've achieved," he added.

"We can't, when we lose, be happy. The players aren't happy, for sure. But what we can be proud of is that we have had a great season.

"The key today was to give everything on the pitch and that’s what we did, we were just missing a little something, I don't know what.

"I think we've still got to be happy with the season. We will see what will happen next season. For now, we rest a little."

Gareth Bale was omitted from Real Madrid's squad to face Manchester City in the Champions League because he did not want to play, according to Zinedine Zidane.

On Wednesday, Madrid named a 24-man group to travel to the Etihad Stadium and while captain Sergio Ramos was included – despite the fact he cannot play in the second leg due to suspension – there was no place for Bale.

The Welshman scored twice in the 3-1 Champions League final win over Liverpool two seasons ago but will play no part as Madrid seek to overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit against Pep Guardiola's side in the last-16 tie on Friday.

Bale has started just once since February – and has been restricted to 110 minutes combined since Madrid's campaign resumed in June – and Zidane explained it was the 31-year-old's decision not to be involved in Manchester.

"I will explain because many things are said," Zidane told reporters in a news conference.

"We have a relationship of respect between player and coach, that is clear. The only thing I can say is that he has decided not to play, and the rest is between him and me."

Zidane grew increasingly frustrated at answering questions on Bale, who may appear to have no future at Madrid but remains under contract until 2022.

"I have already answered before about the situation. The rest is a conversation between the player and the coach, and I am not going to tell you anything," Zidane added.

The fourth and final question on Bale – surrounding his future with Los Blancos – was met with a straight bat.

"Gareth Bale is a Real Madrid player, nothing changes. I respect that," Zidane replied.

"He has decided not to play. All of us here are focused on tomorrow's game."

Eden Hazard is part of Madrid's travelling party, though he has experienced an injury-hit debut season in the Spanish capital.

He was out between November and February due to an ankle problem and then sustained a broken ankle bone, with the congested end-of-season LaLiga run-in causing him further discomfort, yet Zidane has been encouraged by his condition since.

"He has had some discomfort about the end of LaLiga, but I think he is much better now, we have had time to prepare for the game and now he is confident," the Madrid boss added.

"I think there was a minor setback after that second injury but now hopefully he can play and hopefully there will be nothing there to hold him back."

Gareth Bale has been left out of the Real Madrid squad for the Champions League trip to Manchester City.

The Wales star was not named in the 24-man travelling group, but captain Sergio Ramos, who is suspended for the last-16 second leg, was included.

James Rodriguez was also left out, along with striker Mariano Diaz, who tested positive for coronavirus last week and has been self-isolating.

Eden Hazard is in the squad despite concerns over his fitness following an ankle injury, while Luka Jovic, who has started just one Champions League game for Madrid, is also included.

Madrid are trailing 2-1 from the first leg at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Bale's stock under head coach Zinedine Zidane appears to have dropped to its lowest point in 2020, the former Tottenham forward having featured just twice since the Spanish season resumed in June.

Team-mate Casemiro insisted this week that Bale still has the support of Madrid's coaches and players despite going through "not the best time in his career".

Bale has caused some consternation in Spain for his attitude on the sidelines in recent weeks. He has often appeared bored during games and was distant from some of the title celebrations when Madrid were crowned champions last month.

However, his agent, Jonathan Barnett, told BBC Sport that the player "likes living in Madrid and he is going nowhere", and is keen to see out the remaining two years on his contract.

Sergio Ramos is the best defender in the world and can keep on playing until he is 40, according to former Real Madrid team-mate Rafael van der Vaart. 

Ramos was very influential in helping Madrid end Barcelona's run of success in LaLiga, scoring 11 goals as Zinedine Zidane's squad were crowned champions for the first time since 2017. 

The Spaniard was signed from Sevilla as a teenager in 2005 and was still young when he was joined at the club by Van der Vaart, who stayed at the Santiago Bernabeu for two seasons before joining Tottenham in 2010. 

However, having watched on as his old club secured the title once again, the Dutchman is impressed by how Ramos has matured and, considering his physical condition, sees no reason why the 34-year-old should be thinking of retiring anytime soon. 

"For me, he is the best defender in the world," Van der Vaart told Stats Perform News as part of the UEFA Europa League Trophy Tour. 

"When I was at Real Madrid, he was 21 or 22 and bursting with energy. He wanted to be everywhere. Free kicks, corner kicks, everywhere. 

"Now it is different, he has so much focus now. A focus on winning and he uses all his talents for that purpose. He's aware of his skills, strength and conditioning and that helped him being so important for his team in winning already so many titles. His body is unbelievable, he is a machine. 

"When I was watching a game the other day, I thought, 'how old is he? 34?' I believe he can still be playing for another six years, I've so much respect for him."

With LaLiga won, Madrid will now focus on potential European success as they return to Champions League action. 

They need to overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit in their last-16 tie with Manchester City if they are to progress, with the remaining knockout rounds to be staged in Portugal, though Ramos will miss the match against Pep Guardiola's team at the Etihad Stadium due to suspension. 

However, Madrid have been outstanding since the season restarted in Spain midway through June, and Van der Vaart expects a "really interesting" return clash with City, who finished second in the Premier League. 

"Real Madrid have been very, very good after the coronavirus break," he said. "They have all been very focused [on the games]. Including a 10-game winning streak. 

"Karim Benzema and Ramos have been a key part of the team for me, and Zidane for bringing calmness to the team. 

"However, I watched Manchester City against Arsenal playing the semi-final of the FA Cup, as well as other games. They have so much individual talent, so they are always dangerous, for any team, including the magnificent Real Madrid. That's what we've seen in the first leg, so it is going to be a really interesting game." 

Van der Vaart was speaking as part of a Europa League Trophy Tour that has been collecting football boots from fans for Syrian refugees based in Jordan, a cause the former Netherlands international is passionate about. 

"It's great, I remember how incredibly happy I was as a little boy with my football boots. I even put my first pair on to bed and I dreamed of playing football. I hope that all children in the world may experience that kind of childlike joy. I'm so proud that I can help a little bit," Van der Vaart said. 

"We are collecting boots, which hopefully gives a bit more hope and fun for all children. So, I'm proud that I can help a little bit and be a part of it. 

"It's really important [to be able to go out and play]. Now there are so many things, but when I was little you would just go on the street and play. 

"In lockdown it was difficult, of course. You want to meet with friends, you want to go out and play games, but when I started playing it was just me and the ball."

Mauricio Pochettino feels no regret over his decision to honour his Tottenham contract and shun Real Madrid in 2018, but did reveal frustration at a perceived lack of "support" from the Spurs board.

Pochettino spent five years with Spurs after joining from Southampton in 2014 and turned the team into Premier League top-four regulars and Champions League finalists.

But a difficult start to the 2019-20 season led to his dismissal in November last year, with Spurs bringing in Jose Mourinho as his replacement.

Pochettino previously had the opportunity to leave on his own terms in 2018, when Real Madrid attempted to hire him as Zinedine Zidane's successor, but he opted to stay put.

In the short term it proved a wise decision, as he went on to guide Spurs to their first ever Champions League final and Madrid sacked Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari in the same campaign, eventually persuading Zidane to return in March 2019.

But within a few months of Spurs' Champions League defeat to Liverpool, the club's outlook was much gloomier and Pochettino rued not being shown more support by chairman Daniel Levy and the board.

"I was happy at Tottenham and I signed a contract," Pochettino told El Pais when asked if he regretted not joining Madrid when the opportunity arose.

"And we [his staff and Spurs] finished very well, the relationship is impeccable. I always say, without false humility, that we too made mistakes that led to what happened, although we did expect a little more support or reassurance to reverse the situation.

"But the club line was going another way and there was wear; respite was needed from both sides.

"We work in a result-led environment where it seems that all the things that have a good result are the ones that continue. But, how do you measure what works or not?

"Only the one who wins or the one who exceeds expectations? After the Champions League final, four years in the top four, two years without signings ... a different management strategy was needed.

"Sometimes the vision of a coaching staff is not accepted by the club management. We knew what could happen.

"You need to fall, be down to then go up, but Tottenham made the decision to separate us after five and a half years. I understand that it is a long time."

Gareth Bale is "going nowhere" amid ongoing speculation over his Real Madrid future, according to agent Jonathan Barnett.

Bale found himself out of favour as Madrid dethroned bitter rivals Barcelona as LaLiga champions this season, making just two appearances since the 2019-20 campaign resumed last month following the coronavirus-enforced break.

The star forward, whose behaviour has been criticised, featured in 16 league matches this term after he was left out of Zinedine Zidane's squad to face Leganes on the final day of the season on Sunday.

Despite struggling for game time, Barnett insisted his client Bale has no plans to leave the Santiago Bernabeu.

"Gareth is fine. He has two years left on his contract," he told BBC Sport. "He likes living in Madrid and he is going nowhere.

"He is still as good as anyone else in the team. It's up to Zinedine Zidane.

"Of course there's been interest but there's hardly a club in the world which can afford him.

"It's a great loss that he's not in the Real Madrid team at the moment but he will not leave."

Bale has enjoyed great success since joining Madrid from Tottenham in 2013, scoring over 100 goals and winning four Champions League titles to go with a pair of LaLiga trophies.

Amid talk of a fractious relationship with head coach Zidane, Barnett said: "Gareth is not looking to outlast Zinedine Zidane. Mr Zidane has been very successful.

"There's no hatred. Mr Zidane just does not want to play him. Gareth trains every day and he trains well."

Bale was close to leaving Madrid last year but a proposed transfer to Chinese Super League side Jiangsu Suning collapsed.

The 31-year-old Wales international is contracted to Madrid until 2022 but Bale will not consider a loan move ahead of the postponed European Championship in 2021.

"He wants to play for Wales at Euro 2020. He always wants to play well for Wales," Barnett added.

"Gareth is one of the best players in the world. The best players in the world do not go out on loan."

Zinedine Zidane said Gareth Bale's absence from Real Madrid's squad for their draw with Leganes was a "technical decision".

Bale was left out of the squad as Madrid drew 2-2 with Leganes on Sunday, having already clinched the LaLiga title.

The Wales international seems set to leave the LaLiga giants after making just two appearances since the season resumed last month, with his behaviour while on the bench being questioned.

James Rodriguez has been left out of the past five matchday squads – with personal reasons cited initially – and Zidane discussed the duo after finishing the LaLiga campaign.

"You know what happened with one [James]. The other is a technical decision," the Madrid coach said, via AS.

Luka Jovic, meanwhile, came off the bench for what was just his second appearance since the coronavirus-enforced break.

The forward has been linked with a move away after scoring just twice in 26 appearances in his first season in Madrid.

"As always when I talk about Luka, what I say is that he is young," Zidane said.

"He has talent, but it has been a difficult season for him, especially with injuries.

"Of course things that have happened to him, I trust him. We will see next year."

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane says his players will "disconnect" as they prepare for the resumption of the Champions League next month.

Los Blancos, who secured a first LaLiga title since 2017 this week, travel to the Etihad Stadium on August 7 looking to overturn a 2-1 first-leg defeat in their quarter-final against Manchester City.

Speaking after Madrid wrapped up their domestic campaign with a 2-2 draw against Leganes on Sunday – a result that condemned their neighbours to relegation – Zidane says his players will be allowed some time to relax, but is adamant the next few weeks will not be a holiday.

"It is not a holiday that we have now," he said. "Now, I don't think about City. We want to disconnect a bit, then we will have all the time to think. We will have 10-15 days to think. We will disconnect.

"Until the last second we are going to fight to go to that final, but now you don't have to think about the Champions League. It is time to rest and think about gathering strength. The final stretch has been a tremendous effort. Now we all need some relaxation. This is what we are going to do.

"After these four or five days off, we go back and think about the Champions League. No stress or worries."

Madrid were far from their best against Leganes but Zidane refused to be too critical of his players. 

"During the game you can get angry because we didn't play at our level," he said. "We didn't win but we didn't lose either. In the end I prefer to focus on what we did before today. The season has been spectacular. We have to be happy with what we did."

During an emotional TV interview after the final whistle, Leganes captain Unai Bustinza said he was proud of his team-mates' willingness to fight until the end.

"We're all so upset and frustrated and can't believe this," he said as Leganes' four-year stay in the top flight came to an end. "We kept going right until the end and we never let our heads drop. We wanted to do everybody proud. Football can do this to you.

"It's been a difficult year and we haven't had a great deal of luck. Everyone will be upset but we have to lift ourselves back up and come back strongly."

Eden Hazard admitted his first year with Real Madrid has been the worst season of his career.

Former Chelsea star Hazard cost Madrid an initial fee reported to be €100million last July but has endured an injury-plagued 2019-20.

A hamstring issue delayed his debut for Los Blancos, while foot and ankle problems have contributed to him starting just 21 games in all competitions.

Madrid have won the Supercopa de Espana and LaLiga in 2019-20 and remain in the Champions League, though they lost the first leg of their last-16 tie against Manchester City 2-1.

While Hazard was pleased to have got off to a triumphant start at the Santiago Bernabeu, he acknowledged he contributed little to the cause.

"There have been injuries, but I hope next year will be even better," Hazard, who was left out of the squad to face Leganes on Sunday, told franceinfo.

"Even if this season had not been terrible for me, I couldn't have asked for a better experience than coming here and winning the league in my first year.

"This year, it is collectively that we won the title, because on an individual level I have surely had the worst season of my career."

If Madrid overturn their deficit against City, they will face Juventus or Lyon in the quarter-finals when the Champions League heads to Lisbon.

"It was a somewhat bizarre season with everything that happened," said Hazard.

"The season is already very good, but I think it can be even better if we progress from our last-16 second leg of the Champions League.

"When you play for Real Madrid, you want to win all the possible titles. The next one, it has to be the Champions League, even if it's going to be difficult because we have to play at Manchester City and they have a very nice team."

Guiding Madrid to LaLiga glory saw Zinedine Zidane take his trophy haul across two spells in charge to 11 – three shy of Miguel Munoz's club record.

"We all know Zidane as a player, he was the best. As a coach, we don't even need to describe him anymore," said Hazard.

"He has proven, in just a few years, that he is already one of the best coaches. He trusts his players and his players trust him. That's why it works."

Madrid are on course to concede the fewest amount of goals in a 38-game LaLiga season in their history, and Hazard thinks having "one of the best centre-backs in history" in Raphael Varane has been key.

The winger said: "In my career, I have known very great defenders, such as John Terry or Vincent Kompany.

"I think Rapha, even though he is still young, is already one of the best centre-backs in history. The partnership he has with Sergio Ramos is great."

Zinedine Zidane insisted he was not "special", saying he was simply lucky to be in charge of Real Madrid.

Zidane has led Madrid to the LaLiga title this season for his 11th trophy as coach of the Spanish giants.

But the Frenchman dismissed any suggestions he felt like the "special one" – a title Jose Mourinho has previously used to describe himself.

"No, no. I don't feel that. I feel lucky to be here with these players every day," Zidane told a news conference.

"And being in this club, that's why I feel lucky, and that's why I enjoy that much every day. Because one day [it] will finish, as it happened already, but this time for real.

"That's why I am enjoying and focused on these kinds of things."

Madrid's LaLiga title was their first since 2016-17, when Cristiano Ronaldo led them to the crown.

Ahead of their final game of the league season against Leganes on Sunday, Zidane paid tribute to his players for delivering the title.

"I think every title we get is merit of the team, the players who are involved in that time," he said.

"It doesn't have to demerit them, especially this one, as it has been very complicated and tough. We have fought until the end.

"It is time to enjoy the achievement, but for football and for everyone, we have a game [against Leganes]."

Eden Hazard, Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez have been omitted from Real Madrid's squad to face Leganes.

Zinedine Zidane's side will conclude their triumphant LaLiga campaign on Sunday, unblemished form since the resumption seeing off bitter rivals Barcelona with a game to spare.

Los Blancos' 34th Spanish title has been secured largely without the input of Hazard, Bale and James.

Hazard has struggled for form and fitness since joining from Chelsea for €100million before the start of the season.

The 29-year-old Belgium international was still recently feeling the effects of surgery on a broken foot and, although he started for the first time in five matches in the title-clinching 2-1 win over Villarreal, he will miss out this weekend.

Hazard is still expected to have a productive future at Madrid, although it is hard to say the same for Bale and James.

Wales forward Bale has become an increasingly marginalised figure since Zidane's return last term. He has appeared just twice since the restart and the 31-year-old's absence from Sunday's travelling party will end a run of six matches as an unused substitute.

It will be James' fifth game in a row in which he has not been involved. The Colombia playmaker spent the previous two seasons on loan at Bayern Munich and his only appearance of 2020 came when he was handed a surprise start in last month's 2-1 win at Real Sociedad.

James, 29, has a year left on his contract at the Santiago Bernabeu, while Bale's terms run through until 2022.

After facing Leganes - who sit third bottom and must extend their superb late-season form to four wins from five unbeaten matches to have a chance of survival - Madrid travel to face Manchester City on August 7, when they will attempt to overturn a 2-1 deficit in the Champions League last-16 tie.

Zinedine Zidane has just won LaLiga and has a contract with Real Madrid until 2022 but acknowledged his future at the club could quickly have a different outlook.

In his first full season back at the helm, Zidane has led Madrid to success in the Supercopa de Espana and LaLiga to take his trophy haul across two spells in the dugout to 11 – three shy of equalling Miguel Munoz's club record.

With the league wrapped up, the Spanish champions can focus on the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie against Manchester City. They trail 2-1 ahead of the return game at the Etihad Stadium on August 7.

Zidane guided Madrid to the Champions League trophy, which is considered the main objective every season at the Santiago Bernabeu, in three straight seasons during his first stint as coach.

Despite only winning LaLiga on Thursday, Zidane was asked if he could guarantee that he will be at the helm next season.

He replied: "Nobody knows what's going to happen in the future. I never talk about next season or the following year.

"I've got a contract and I'm happy. You never know what will happen in the future.

"Things can change overnight in the world of football and I have no idea what the future holds."

Zidane urged his team to maintain their intensity in their final LaLiga game of the season on Sunday against Leganes, who will be hoping to get a positive result and retain their top-flight status.

"We have to find that motivation. It's a league game. When we put on the Real Madrid shirt, we want to win all the games," he said.

"That's the DNA at Real Madrid. It's a league game not a friendly and we want to play well.

"I don't think we've got anything to prove. We just want to maintain this positive momentum. We want to keep winning.

"We have another big game. We said there were 11 finals. There were 10 and we won the league, but we want to finish in the best way possible.

"We want to keep pushing and testing ourselves until the very end of the season. There will be a few days' rest after the game against Leganes, but the season continues. We will be back training and preparing for City after the game against Leganes."

Karim Benzema struck both of Madrid's goals in their 2-1 victory over Villarreal last time out, moving him onto 21 in LaLiga for the season – two fewer than league-leading Barcelona captain Lionel Messi.

While Zidane would take great pride in Benzema winning the Pichichi Award for LaLiga's highest scoring player, he was not willing to give any hints about his team selection for trip to Butarque.

"I'd love for Benzema to get the Pichichi," said Zidane. "But I'm not going to say who's going to play.

"He's a player whose done a great job and deserves to end the season as the top goalscorer, but it's going to go down to the final game of the season. Let's see what happens on Sunday."

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