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Dec 12, 2012

Salgado open to Real return

Former Real Madrid and Blackburn defender Michel Salgado says he would be willing to return to Madrid to help Jose Mourinho understand the unique way things work at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

The Galician right-back, who left Blackburn last summer and is currently living in Dubai, said he would love to return to the club where he spent ten seasons and won two Champions League trophies.

"I would do anything that Madrid wants, whenever it needs me," Salgado said in an interview with AS on Wednesday. "My phone is always open for Madrid, for Mourinho or anyone from the club. When they call me for something, I am here."

Salgado, the son-in-law of former Madrid president Lorenzo Sanz, said power was too centralised at the Bernabeu under Mourinho and current president Florentino Perez.

"Florentino is a powerful person who controls everything," he said. "He has done lots of good things, but also made mistakes. He decided Mourinho was his key to come out of a difficult moment. That was why he gave him so much power. But Spanish football, and above all Madrid, is not like that.

"That would work in England, but not here. There is another culture, other structures. That is what is causing the 'shocks' at Madrid. This great power that Mourinho has been given. Now it is difficult to rectify."

Salgado, 37, said he was not criticising Mourinho, who had done what was asked of him in ending Barcelona's La Liga dominance under Josep Guardiola, but the next Madrid coach should be someone with more feeling for the club, such as his former team-mates Raul and Fernando Hierro.

"Mourinho is doing good work at a difficult moment, but when his time ends, they must think of a future project with a Madridista identity," Salgado said. "I could see myself working with (Raul and Hierro). Important people from the past could be in Madrid's future. I do not know when or who. We people who have been there for many years could do important things. I do not see myself as president, but working inside, close to the dressing-room and the pitch."

Salgado also believes current Spain boss Vicente Del Bosque, a former Madrid player who coached the team to win the 2000 and 2002 Champions League trophies, had shown a great example by being able to manage both the Bernabeu dressing-room and the local media.

"He managed the most difficult dressing-room Madrid has had," Salgado said. "Not because it was disunited, but because of the phenomenal players. Del Bosque was respected for his behaviour inside and outside the dressing-room. There was mutual respect. He knew how far he could go with everyone, in each individual situation - Ronaldo, Zizou, Figo, Raul.

"With Del Bosque the bad results did not affect us because in the press conference he made everyone see that nothing important had happened. From there things were calm, even with the press. The fans left the Bernabeu talking about football, nothing else."

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