Tuesday, July 11, 2006

FIFA probing Zidane's actions; Materazzi changes story

FIFA will open a disciplinary investigation to look at Zidane's head butt during Sunday's final. Whatever their decision, it will not mean much as Zidane will never professionally play the game again. I guess they could decide not to invite him to future FIFA events, but still, it will be more of a symbolic decision.

On the receiving side of the head bang, Materazzi has changed his story. At first he said that he did not say anything to insult Zidane, insisting that Zinedine was upset over having his shirt pulled. However, he has now admitted to insulting him, but he fully denies that he said anything related to terrorists or Zidane's mother.

“It was one of those insults that always fly around the pitch,” he said. “For me, the mother is sacred.”

So what did he say? All that he would admit to is, "I used an insult that I've heard used a dozen times and which is heard all the time on the pitch."

The mystery continues.

Finally, FIFA officially said that the fourth official did see the incident live and not on the video screens in the stadium.

"The incident was directly observed by fourth official Luis Medina Cantalejo (of Spain) from his position at the pitch-side, who informed the referee and his assistants through the communications system," said the world body.

So when will this Zidane controversy end? I don't think it ever will, nor will we ever know for sure what was said. For at least the next four years, whenever the 2006 World Cup is discussed, the conversation will turn to the 110th minute of the final in Berlin.

It is sad that such an action will be the common memory of a good cup.


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