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Zidane resigns from Real Madrid, with Pochettino an early favorite to succeed him

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Uh oh.

Tottenham Hotspur v Real Madrid - UEFA Champions League Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

There’s huge news in the world of football this morning as Zinedine Zidane held a snap press conference to announce that he was stepping down as manager of Real Madrid after winning his third consecutive Champions League title.

The news has sent the media into an absolute frenzy about who might succeed him, and unfortunately, one of the names linked to the open job by the media is none other than Mauricio Pochettino.

Poch literally just signed a new contract at Spurs last week, but there have been rumors that his new deal contains a clause that would allow him to speak to either Real Madrid or Paris St-Germain about a potential opening if they should ever come calling. That info is without confirmation, but it hasn’t stopped virtually every media outlet from speculating as to whether Poch might decide to bail on Spurs yet this summer.

Personally, I think it’s pretty highly unlikely. Pochettino re-signing with Spurs was seen as a statement of intent, with a number of high profile players reportedly now ready to sign their own improved contracts to stay at Spurs and play under him. It would be pretty ridiculous for him to bolt so soon after a new deal. But this is football, and who knows what can happen. We know Poch is a “loyalty guy” but that resolve hasn’t really been tested through a high profile job opening, and both Madrid and PSG are jobs that might tempt him.

If he wants to go.

We’ll need to wait to see if Pochettino comes out with any statement or if there are developments in the coming days. Poch could pretty quickly put the matter to rest if he wants to. Other candidates that have emerged as possibilities for the Madrid job include Real’s youth team manager (and former player) Guti, and Joachim Low.

UPDATE: Well, I’m not sure how I missed this, but Matt Law reported in the Times last week that no such release clause exists in Pochettino’s contract. If so, that puts Spurs in a much, much stronger position to tell Madrid to buzz off. Nothing to see here, move along.