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Thursday 7. July 2011 - 15:52

Zinedine Zidane: I will be Real Madrid's director of football

Zinedine Zidane has announced he will be working more closely with coach Jose Mourinho as Real Madrid's new director of football next season.

"I will be director of football for the first team," he told the press, as reported by

Zidane, a former Madrid midfielder, had been operating as a special advisor to president Florentino Perez, but the 39-year-old is now preparing for a change of role.

The former France ace is expected to have a more hands-on approach when it comes to team matters with Mourinho gladly accepting the extra help.

" Mourinho influenced this decision, but also Florentino [Perez]," Zidane said.

"We will see [what tasks I am assigned], but I will [be occupying the new role] from Monday until the end of the season."

Zidane was influential in signing young French defender Raphael Varane last month, and on the transfer he said: "He has a tremendous future, and it's a good thing to arrive at Real Madrid so young [at 18-years-old]. Varane liked the coach, so that is why he is here."

Meanwhile, Santos forward Neymar continues to be linked with a move to Madrid and Zidane compared him with another Br azilian who moved from the Vila Belmiro to the Bernabeu: Robinho.

"He is similar to Robinho, but he scores more goals. Neymar is a player who could interest Real Madrid," he said.

Asked about Barcelona's reported interest in the player, he said: "It's normal that everyone wants Neymar, but we have to see what the club decides. We have to take things step by step."

Neymar, who recently claimed he wants to remain at Santos, is currently with Br azil at the Copa America in Argentina.

Provided by: Frank Henriksen
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