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2006 World Cup Score Board & News Central [Closed]
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 10:44 am    Post subject: The Zidane thing Reply with quote

We haven't heard the last of it, not for a long shot. Newspapers were full of it today, and I'm sure French tv too, even if it's yesterday's news by tv standards. Unless there's some spectacular revelation, I don't think American tv will carry it.

On the Golden Ball award, Zidane beat out the Italian captain by several hundred votes, says the NY Times, which did not participate in the vote.

Also according to the Times, the Italians had been trying to provoke the French, and especially Zidane, who was the biggest threat to them, all along the Cup games. They also have a history of racism, at some point openly using the Fascist salute when they came on the field. That's why "Say No To Racism" was written in big letters on the pitch before every game.

Some Brazilian commentators hired a lip reader to make out what Materazzi said to Zidane. Seems he called Zizou a "dirty terrorist" and said Zizou's sister was a whore. When asked if it was true, Materazzi said "I'm an ignorant man, I don't even know what the word mean". Likely story, heh? Rolling Eyes

So all those are extenuating circumstances, but I still think Zidane should have had better control of himself and waited until after the game to settle his quarrell with Materazzi.
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Fleur Again

PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 11:06 am    Post subject: FIFA is opening an enquiry Reply with quote

Speculation is rife after FIFA authorities announced they would open an inquest into Zidane's head butt. People are wondering whether both Zidane and Materazzi will be suspended. Not that Zidane cares, since he's officially retired after the end of the WC. Suspension means zip to someone who doesn't intend to play again.

French daily Le Figaro confirms that Materazzi denies knowing what a "dirty Islamist terrorist" is (where has he been living these past few years? In a parallel universe?). I forgot the word "Islamist" (or maybe it was "Moslem" according to other sources, same difference) in my previous post.

X, you asked me if I "got over" France's loss. Yes, win and lose is part of life, we just move on. Of course I'm very disappointed but what can one do? Life goes on.

According to a poll, 61% of the French have forgiven Zidane for losing his cool (and the Cup!), and 55% agree that he deserves the Golden Ball award.

But we haven't heard the last of it. Though I agree with X that it's better to put all that behind and move on to other things, most people are awaiting Zidane's explanation of his outrageous behavior. He's going to speak in public in a couple of days. But really, it's water under the bridge now, I don't see the point of harping on it. Seems the media and the public think otherwise.

Not to mention, it doesn't look like anyone is posting about anything else, despite Pols' efforts in the Politix forum. Neutral
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:03 pm    Post subject: Zidane is silent, his family speaks out Reply with quote

July 11, 2006
Zidane Is Silent; Family Suggests an Insult Provoked Him

Zinédine Zidane leaving Élysée Palace in Paris on Monday. Zidane made no comment on what prompted him to head-butt an Italian player in Sunday’s game.

BERLIN, July 10 — While Italy welcomed home its triumphant World Cup champions on Monday, France awaited a full explanation of why its national team captain, Zinédine Zidane, head-butted an opponent in the chest and was ejected from Sunday’s championship match here.

Zidane has yet to say anything publicly about the incident. But family members, in telephone interviews, said they believed the Italian defender Marco Materazzi had called Zidane, the son of Algerian immigrants, a terrorist.

“We think he either called him a terrorist or a son of Harkis,’’ said Mokhtar Haddad, one of Zidane’s cousins, who studied the pivotal scene on a big screen with friends and family in their home village, Aguemoune, 160 miles east of Algiers.

The Harkis reference is a term for Algerians who fought on the French side in Algeria’s war for independence, and it is a severe insult for someone with Zidane’s heritage.

“The insult went in that direction,’’ said Djamel Zidane, Zinédine’s brother, adding that Zidane was expected to call his family in Algeria on Monday evening or Tuesday to tell them exactly what had happened. “Otherwise he would not have reacted that way.’’

An anti-racist organization based in Paris, SOS Racism, issued a statement that said Zidane had apparently been called a “dirty Arab terrorist” by Materazzi in the 109th minute. The group said it based its report on sources it did not name.

Materazzi denied making any such remark, according to the Italian news agency Ansa. “It is absolutely not true,” he was quoted as saying. “I did not call him a terrorist. I’m ignorant. I don’t even know what the word means.” [yeah, right, we're gonna believe that!]

FIFA offered no explanation of what occurred between Zidane and Materazzi. It has also not made the referee Horacio Elizondo of Argentina available to explain his red-card ejection of Zidane.

On Monday, Zidane was named the top player of the tournament by journalists covering the World Cup. He received 2,012 votes for the Golden Ball award, beating out the Italian defender Fabio Cannavaro with 1,977. (The New York Times does not participate in the voting for the award.)

In Paris, the response of government officials, the public and the news media to Zidane’s act ranged from support to incredulity to anger. By being ejected, Zidane left France without its best player for the final 10 minutes of overtime and for penalty kicks, which Italy won, 5-3, after overtime ended with the score tied at 1-1. It was the 14th ejection in his professional career, according to The Associated Press.

“Zizou is someone who reacts to things,” Aimé Jacquet, the coach of the French team in 1998, told reporters, using Zidane’s nickname. “Unfortunately he could not control himself. It’s terrible to see him leave this way.”

Jean-François Lamour, France’s sports minister, said in a television interview in Paris that he could imagine that Zidane was provoked. Still, he called the conduct “unpardonable.”

While Italy’s players celebrated with an estimated 500,000 fans at Rome’s Circus Maximus, home of chariot racing in ancient times, France’s team ate lunch in Paris with President Jacques Chirac.

Chirac called Zidane a virtuoso and a soccer genius. “You are also a man of heart, commitment, conviction,” Chirac said, according to The Associated Press. “That’s why France admires and loves you.”

At the same time, Chirac acknowledged that this was a difficult moment in a splendid career that ended in ignominy on Sunday.

Many consider Zidane the greatest soccer player of the past 20 years. France’s victory at the 1998 World Cup, with Zidane leading the way on home soil, became a proclamation for multiculturalism. He is an iconic figure, perceived as representing family values, discretion, civility and hard work. But Zidane is also a complicated man whose temper has caused him trouble before on the field.

Now his final act as a professional, the head-butting of Materazzi, is sure to undercut his reputation.

Marie-George Buffet, a former French sports minister, said in a radio interview in Paris, “We can’t excuse this gesture.”

The French sports newspaper L’Équipe posted a front-page headline that said “Eternal Regrets.”

In an editorial, the paper posed the same question that millions asked of Zidane: Why?
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:13 pm    Post subject: Gee, I must lack a sense of humor Reply with quote

But where exactly should we place the limits of bad taste? Eek
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked I'm speech-less
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is what happened when people left football to only Europeans!!!! very happy
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did not like it when they gave him the "golden ball" because it looked like he got rewarded for bad behavior. The guy has a history of violence. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Visitor, I agree with you. Unfortunately this is the state of the world we live in. Faults of guys like Zidane are relatively little (they are what they are) comparing to those of FIFA and national football associations because these are the bodies that say who could play, and they allow guys, like you said, with a history of violence and misconducts to come on the field. With football's unchanged policies, should we be surprised to see more thugs and cheaters in WC 2010?

Materazzi is no stranger to controversy. He was suspended for two months for punching Siena defender Bruno Cirillo after a Serie A game in February 2004, and earned condemnation following a brutal tackle on Sweden and Juventus striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic in October 2005.

Materazzi was also sent off three times while playing for Everton in the 1998-99 season.

One Italian senator even suggested that Materazzi -- also sent off three times while playing for Everton in the 1998-99 season -- didn't merit selection for the Italian team because of his physical style.

Zidane also is known for having a temper. He was sent off for stomping on a Saudi Arabian opponent at the 1998 World Cup, while at Germany 2006 he was banned for France's group match against Togo.

Five years ago with Juventus, Zidane head-butted an opponent in a Champions League match against Hamburger SV after being tackled from behind.

Meanwhile, Rome Mayor Walter Veltroni accused FIFA of double standards, noting that soccer's governing body named Zidane as the tournament's best player after his head-butt, while Italy forward Francesco Totti was kicked out of the 2004 European Championship for spitting in an opponent's face.
-- SI
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Les Bleus

PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 8:18 pm    Post subject: Get a sense of proportion Reply with quote

Visitor wrote:
I did not like it when they gave him the "golden ball" because it looked like he got rewarded for bad behavior. The guy has a history of violence. Smile

Zidane's still considered the best football player in the last 20 years and is generally much better behaved than some other guys. It's not him (or his team) who got a record of yellow and red cards or have a history of playing down and dirty (grabbing, diving, tripping, elbowing). He may be sensitive to certain insults, but we all have our weak spots, and that has nothing to do with his qualities as a "footballeur".

His was not the only case of head-butting in that game either, it's just that this one was seen - refs didn't see some of the other cases of bad behavior, or the French would have had another penalty shot during regulatory time. The Italians were out for blood. They knew the French played much better all through the game, and Italy had lost to France every time they played in world or regional competition. They also are sore losers, remember when they fired that Korean who was playing for one of their professional teams but scored against them during the last World Cup? What did they expect him to do, not try his best for his country to win?

The Golden Ball didn't reward bad behavior, it was an acknowledgment of skill and superb play during a whole career. Zidane is an artist with a football. Plus, if you're not "physical", you don't get into contact sports like football to begin with. If he does have a temper, and if he reacts particularly badly to certain slurs against his sister or worse, his mother, well he's only human. Now he realizes he fell into the Italians' trap, they were baiting him for just this kind of reaction. Of course he shouln't have lost his cool, but finishing his career on a red card and a scandal, losing the Cup which his team could very well have won, is for him punishment enough. Awarding him the Golden Ball is acknowledging all that, and it is the right thing to have done.
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