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 By Ian Holyman

Zinedine Zidane rejects Monaco talk

Zinedine Zidane has told lequipe.fr media speculation he could soon take over as coach of either Monaco or Bordeaux is "rubbish" and insisted he has had "no contact" with any club.

French media has tipped Zidane, 41, to succeed Claudio Ranieri at Monaco should, as has already been reported, the principality club choose to end the Italian's contract a year early following the last game of the Ligue 1 campaign.

On Tuesday, regional daily Sud Ouest also claimed the former France international tops the wishlist of his former club, Bordeaux, to replace Francis Gillot as boss, despite the current incumbent having a year left on his deal at the Stade Chaban-Delmas.

After being appointed assistant coach to Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid last summer, Zidane has publicly stated his ambition of taking charge of a senior team himself, but insisted his focus remains on his current functions.

He said: "Like always, everyone is talking a lot, and given that I never react, people say any old rubbish. And like always, I have to react. For example, I have had no contact of any kind with Monaco as I have heard said.

"In short, I have contacted nobody nor proposed myself to any club, in Monaco or elsewhere. I'm under contract with Real Madrid, I'm with Real, and my only priority is Real, La Liga and the Champions League final. Period."

Zidane infamously headbutted Marco Materazzi during the 2006 World Cup final, which the Azzurri went on to win on penalties in Berlin.

Former teammate Lilian Thuram told Argentine TV channel DeporTV Zidane's actions had perhaps deprived himself and his nation of a second World Cup triumph.

"It seems normal to me to say Zidane made a mistake," said Thuram, who won the '98 World Cup alongside Zidane and also featured in the '06 final. "Any one of us can make mistakes in life, but I don't agree, as some others would have us believe, that he was right. Because he wasn't right. He made a mistake.

"People who say that he was right have never found themselves in a situation where you need to work together to achieve an extraordinary objective. And suddenly there is one of you who puts that in danger and who makes achieving that goal, for which you've worked your whole life, almost impossible."

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