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Why did Zinedine Zidane wear the No.5 at Real Madrid? France legend reveals shirt choice

Zinedine Zidane revealed why we wore No.5 at Real Madrid which has been inherited by Jude Bellingham this season.

  • Zidane shifted from No.21 to 5 at Real Madrid
  • Florentino Perez suggested him the number
  • Bellingham handed the same jersey

WHAT HAPPENED? The England international, who has been a long-time admirer of Zidane, joked that “there wasn’t much else left” to pick from while opening up on his reason behind choosing to wear the iconic No.5 shirt which once belonged to the French legend. Incidentally, Zidane also faced the same predicament when he joined Los Blancos back in 2001 from Juventus, where he wore No.21 at the back.

WHAT THEY SAID: The No.5 topic was brought up by Lionel Messi during a recent sponsor event for Adidas.

“It was weird to see another 10 wearing number 5,” the Argentine commented.

Zidane then went on to reveal what happened behind the scenes that forced him to choose that number.

“Florentino Perez, the president, didn’t like the players wearing the numbers 25, 30, 35. He was from the old school. The number 1 for the goalkeeper and then up to number 10,” Zidane said.

“(Manolo) Sanchis had number 5 for Madrid, he left, and when I got there, the president told me ‘wouldn’t you like to have a number from 1 to 10?’ and we picked the number 5 because he didn’t want the 25, 30, 35, this is not football, it is American football, so in the end, I got number 5.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Zidane spent five years with Real Madrid and during his stint, he won La Liga, Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, and the Intercontinental Cup one apiece and the Supercopa de Espana on two occasions in 2001 and 2003. The significance of inheriting Zidane’s number adds symbolic weight to Bellingham’s role in the team, highlighting the club’s expectations for the young midfielder to follow in the footsteps of the iconic Zidane. He has already surpassed his idol, at least in one yardstick, with the 20-year-old already on 10 La Liga goals in just 11 appearances, which is more than the 1998 World Cup winner ever managed in a season during his stint as a player at the Santiago Bernabeu.


Bellingham-Zidane Real Madrid splitGetty Images

WHAT NEXT? After being rested due to an injury scare in the Champions League fixture against Braga on Wednesday, there are indications that Bellingham could make a comeback over the weekend when Real Madrid host Valencia in a La Liga match.

Read Nore:Why did Zinedine Zidane wear the No.5 at Real Madrid? France legend reveals shirt choice