Fourteen years after the famous headbutting incident involving Marco Materazzi and Zidane Zidane at the 2006 World Cup Final game in Germany, no one could have known what led to the incident or what Materrazi could have said to spark the outrage from Zidane.
Over the years, there have been lots of rumors about what happened and what the Italian said to cause the incident, and Italian has now revealed all, talking about the fact they have clashed several times before the eventual moment of madness from Zizou.
“Zidane’s headbutt? I wasn’t expecting it at that moment,” he told Spanish outlet AS in an interview, “I was lucky enough that the whole episode took me by surprise because if I had expected something like that to happen and had been ready for it, I’m sure both of us would have ended up being sent off.
“There had been a bit of contact between us in the area. He had scored France’s goal in the first half and our coach (Marcello Lippi) told me to mark him. After that first brush between us, I apologized but he reacted badly.
“After the third clash, I frowned and he retorted: ‘I’ll give you my shirt later’. I replied that I’d rather have his sister than his shirt.”
It’s the first time the former Inter defender has confirmed exactly what he said. There have been many rumors about it in the past and last year he would only go as far as confirming it wasn’t about Zizou’s mother.
“My words were stupid but did not deserve that reaction. In any neighborhood of Rome, Naples, Turin, Milan Paris, I hear much more serious things.
“I talked about his sister not his mother like I have read in some newspapers. My mother died while I was a teenager, I would never insult his.”
Italy defeated France on penalties to be declared World Champions in 2006 but the incident between Zidane and Materazzi was the major highlight of the match.