Zinedine Zidane Comments on 'Absurd' Real Madrid Transfer Ban, His Sons and More

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistJanuary 16, 2016

TOPSHOT - Real Madrid's French coach Zinedine Zidane looks at players during the Spanish league football match Real Madrid CF vs RC Deportivo La Coruna at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on January 9, 2016.  AFP PHOTO / GERARD JULIEN / AFP / GERARD JULIEN        (Photo credit should read GERARD JULIEN/AFP/Getty Images)
GERARD JULIEN/Getty Images

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane stated he's "calm" about the club's two-window transfer ban and called the decision to include his four sons in the report "absurd."

Both Los Blancos and Atletico Madrid were on Thursday handed suspensions preventing them from registering new players until the summer of 2017 in relation to signing underage players from abroad, per BBC Sport. However, Zidane was quoted by J.I. Garcia-Ochoa of Spanish daily Marca, and he said the punishment is "a mistake:"

"It doesn't make sense. I thought we were here to talk about tomorrow's game. Let's just wait until next week. I'm sure it's a mistake. The club will appeal. It isn't just my kids, there are many other families."

The Zidane family with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez (third from right).
The Zidane family with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez (third from right).Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

The transfer embargo doesn't include the current January window, but should Real's appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport fall through, they could be forced to go 18 months without fielding any new players.

As explained by the Independent's Jack de Menezes, Zidane's sons, Enzo, Luca, Elyaz and Theo—each of whom is in the Real Madrid academy—are all mentioned in the FIFA report as examples of how Real breached regulations. But the first-team chief proclaimed the allegations make no sense, owing to the fact they're long-term residents in Madrid.

"It's absurd," Zidane said. "My kids have spent their entire lives in Madrid with me and the family. I'm sure there's a solution. What's important is that we know what happened and we know there's a solution. I'm calm and relaxed."

Zidane's eldest son, Enzo, is a staple in Real's Castilla team.
Zidane's eldest son, Enzo, is a staple in Real's Castilla team.Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Los Merengues are reported to have broken rules in relation to the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18. However, there are three exceptions to when a club may sign an under-18 player from abroad.

FIFA can sanction a transfer if a player's parents are moving to the country of the new club for reasons other than football (such as a career) or if the player in question is aged between 16 and 18 and the move is between two clubs in European Union nations. Also, a transfer is permitted if the player lives within 50 kilometres of the border of the country to which he is moving.

Another factor working in Real's favour is the fact Zidane's wife, Veronique—mother to all four of their sons—holds Spanish citizenship. Enzo and Luca both moved to Madrid when Zidane joined Real from Juventus in 2001, while Theo and Elyaz were born in 2002 and 2005 respectively.

Speaking to the media on Friday, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was confident Real would see their ban overturned, per the Independent's James Orr"They will appeal, it will be overturned and they will be allowed to buy in next two windows."

Zidane's four sons all play in Real Madrid's academy teams.
Zidane's four sons all play in Real Madrid's academy teams.GERARD JULIEN/Getty Images

Along with their two-window transfer ban, Real were also fined 360,000 Swiss francs (£249,000). Atletico were told to pay a larger sum of 900,000 Swiss francs (£622,000).