Real great Raul not eyeing quick return as coach

NEW YORK: Real Madrid great Raul has no plans to make a quick return to the game as a coach following his decision to leave New York Cosmos and hang up his boots at the end of the North American Soccer League (NASL) season in November.

The Spaniard announced this month that he was going to call time on a 21-year playing career that will always be defined by his exploits at Real where he won three Champions League trophies and six La Liga titles.

He was the Spanish club’s record scorer with 323 goals in 741 appearances until Cristiano Ronaldo recently beat his tally.

“I don’t feel like a coach and it is not something that I am thinking of becoming in the next few years,” the 38-year-old Raul told a news conference in New York on Tuesday.

“Along with this, in order to be a coach you have to train to become one and I haven’t even started. I would like to coach a successful team though.

“At the moment I will stay here with my family and then after that I will see if any interesting projects come up."

Having come through the Real youth academy, Raul played for the Bernabeu club until 2010 and then had spells at Schalke 04 and Al-Sadd in Qatar before joining the Cosmos.

His most treasured memories are from his time at Real.

“(My favourite moment) I think was my debut for Real Madrid when I was only 17 and my best goal was probably the first I scored at the Bernabeu in my second match,” he said.

“The feeling of scoring in this stadium, in front of 90,000 fans, is incredible. I was fortunate to do it many times and win a lot of titles.”