“Zidane will shortly begin training to be a coach whilst at the same time coaching Real Madrid's youth academy.” -Photo by AFP

MADRID: Zinedine Zidane, who has been tipped to one day manage France, will soon begin training to be a coach while he works at Real Madrid's youth academy, the Spanish club said Monday.

“Zinedine Zidane will shortly begin training to be a coach whilst at the same time coaching Real Madrid's youth academy,” the club said in a statement posted on their website.

The 40-year-old, who played for Real between 2001 and his retirement in 2006 and who has since last year been working as the club's sporting director, will finish his team management qualification this year, the statement added.

“That will allow him to formalise his knowledge and training which will enable him to fulfil an aspiration that he made public in the press conference in which he announced his retirement as a player in April 2006: to work with Real Madrid's youth academy,” it said.

The three-time World Player of the Year, whose 17-year-old son Enzo is a member of the Real academy, is studying a diploma in sports management in Limoges in south-western France.

Zidane holds legendary status in France as a member of the national teams that won the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000.

Earlier this month the president of the French Football Federation, Noel Le Graet, said Zidane is a contender to one day manage Les Bleus.

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