Zinedine Zidane said that he had stepped down as Real Madrid coach as the club's hierarchy did not have enough faith in him to rebuild an ageing squad.

Zidane, who returned to Real for a second spell in charge in March 2019, won two La Liga titles and three Champions League crowns during his two stints as coach.

However, he stepped down last week after Real suffered their first trophyless season in 11 years, finishing second in La Liga, being knocked out of the Champions League semi-finals and suffering a humiliating Copa del Rey exit in the round of 32 to third division minnows Alcoyano.

In an open letter published in sports daily AS, Zidane said the first time he left as coach in 2018 was because he felt the team needed a new approach to stay at the highest level after enjoying so much success.

"Right now, things are different," he said. "I'm leaving because I feel the club no longer has the faith in me I need, nor the support to build something in the medium or long term."

Zidane also suggested that his relationship with the club president had changed in recent weeks, and hit out at the series of leaks and stories about his future coming from within Real.

"I would have liked my relationship with the club and the president over the past few months to have been a little different to that of other coaches," he added.

"I wasn’t asking for privileges, of course not, just a little more recollection.

"It hurt me so much when I read in the press, after a defeat, that I would be sacked if I didn’t win the next game.

"It hurt me and the whole team because these deliberately leaked messages to the media negatively influenced the squad, they created doubts and misunderstandings."

There has been a sense the fortunes of the club, which won three Champions League titles back-to-back under Zidane, have been fading for some time and that a significant rebuild is needed.

Long-standing captain and talisman Sergio Ramos is 35, Karim Benzema is 34 in December while the likes of Marcelo (33), Toni Kroos (31) and Eden Hazard (30) are all over 30 now while Luka Modric was this month given a year's contract extension despite turning 36 at the start of next season.

Zidane also felt his personal worth to the club was not fully appreciated.

"I want there to be respect for what we have achieved together. I would have liked my relationship with the club and the president over the past few months to have been a little different to that of other coaches," he added.

"I wasn't asking for privileges, of course not, just a little more recollection.

"These days the life of a coach in the dugout at a big club is two seasons, little more.

"For it to last longer the human relationships are essential, they are more important than money, more important than fame, more important than everything. They need to be nurtured."