Protect and Defend

Welcome to my blog, Protect and Defend. You don’t have to understand me. You only have to agree with me. I can live with losing the good fight, but I can not live with not fighting that good fight at all. - Publius

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Zidane and Materazzi

This story is going to be around for while. From the Associated Press (July 11, 2006).

MILAN, Italy - Marco Materazzi admits he insulted Zinedine Zidane before the France captain head-butted him in the World Cup final. Materazzi denies calling him a "terrorist."
"I did insult him, it's true," Materazzi said in Tuesday's Gazzetta dello Sport. "But I categorically did not call him a terrorist. I'm not cultured and I don't even know what an Islamic terrorist is.”
Zidane and Materazzi exchanged words after Italy broke up a French attack in extra-time of Sunday's final in Berlin. Seconds later, Zidane lowered his head and rammed Materazzi in the chest, knocking him to the ground.
Zidane was sent off, reducing France to 10 men. Italy won the game in a penalty shootout.
"I held his shirt for a few seconds only, then he turned round and spoke to me, sneering," the Italian defender said. "He looked me up and down, arrogantly and said: 'If you really want my shirt, I'll give it to you afterwards.'"
The 32-year-old Inter Milan player did not elaborate exactly on what he said to Zidane.
"It was one of those insults you're told tens of times and that always fly around the pitch," he said.
Media reports, based on interpretations by lip-readers, have suggested that Materazzi called Zidane a terrorist or insulted his mother or sister. Materazzi denies these claims, too.
"For me, the mother is sacred, you know that," Materazzi told the newspaper.
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…

What makes this even stranger is that according to today’s Washington Post Zidane is “the 34-year-old son of Christian Algerian immigrants” (Washington Post, July 11, 2006, E6). So Zidane is not even Muslim nor are his parents. It seems like everything is speculation and will continue to be so until Zidane comes out and talks about this.

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