Madrid (Spain), January 23: Real Madrid on Friday confirmed in a communique that first team coach Zinedine Zidane has tested positive for the coronavirus, COVID-19.
The test means that Zidane has been forced to self-isolate and is unable to travel with the rest of the squad for Saturday's La Liga game away to Deportivo Alaves in the city of Vitoria, where his assistant coach David Bettoni will be in charge.
The positive test comes just two days after Zidane's side was knocked out of the Copa del Rey competition away to third-tier Alcoyano and this Saturday's game was seen as an important test for the Frenchman, who has already been close to losing his job this season.
Just two weeks ago, Zidane was forced to miss some training sessions after being in close contact with a person who subsequently tested positive for COVID-19, but was able to coach the team in their 0-0 draw in Pamplona and their subsequent Supercup defeat to Athletic Club Bilbao after returning a negative test.
The fact he has been in close contact with the team this week is a worry, although the club has strictly followed the protocols established by La Liga. These mean the rest of the squad will undergo a further PCR test before travelling to Vitoria, while Zidane will have to spend at least 10 days in quarantine and return two negative tests before he is allowed back at Madrid's Valdebebas training ground.