Here's the text message Zinedine Zidane sent to his players after he quit Real Madrid
Zinedine Zidane's reign as Real Madrid was brief but incredibly successful, and his decision to walk away from the club sent shockwaves throughout the sport.
Zidane revealed at a press conference in the Spanish capital on Thursday afternoon that he had decided to quit as manager. Just five days previously, he had helped guide Madrid to their third Champions League title in three years. In just two and a half seasons as Real manager, Zidane won three European Cups and the Spanish title. He has chosen to walk away at the top and it's safe to say no one will ever match his feat of winning club football's top prize in three consecutive seasons.
Immediately following his announcement, Madrid players paid tribute to their former boss on social media, and their respect and admiration for the former world footballer of the year was evident.
Details about how Zidane informed his players that he was quitting the club have since emerged.
According to Spanish publication Sport, Zidane told Madrid captain Sergio Ramos in person that he was going to resign as manager. He then broke the news to the rest of his squad with a WhatsApp message.
The message reportedly read:
"Thanks for everything. Without your support in the hardest moments, none of what we have achieved would have been possible. We'll meet again soon, a hug."
The report claims that Gareth Bale was the only Real player not to respond. The Welshman and Zidane are understood to have fallen out last season. Zidane wanted Bale to track opposition full-backs and help out in the defensive side of the game, but the forward felt he shouldn't have to and was subsequently dropped. The former Tottenham Hotspur star didn't post a message on social media about Zidane after Thursday's press conference.
The Frenchman's departure may mean Bale remains at the club, despite speculation linking him with a transfer to Manchester United.