Zidane, one of the greatest to put on the boots was recently named interim manager of Real Madrid after club President and board opted to sack Rafa Benitez.
Despite the brilliance displayed in the above video, Zidane is famous outside of the football world for one polarizing incident:
Yes, the headbutt during the world cup. So naturally, as an icon takes to the sidelines to lead the question on everyone’s mind:
‘Zidane was asked how he would react if one of his own players were to headbutt an opponent.’
‘The manager of Real Madrid’s ‘second string’ said: “If I was the coach and one of my players did that? Honestly, I would be disappointed but I would not come down hard on him. I would try to understand what happened and I would support my player.’
Zidane was adamant at the time that Materazzi was deserving of the forehead justice for some choice words he said about Zinedine’s sister.
Materazzi admitted that he did rile Zidane into his outburst by taunting the Frenchman’s sister later in a newspaper interview. Zidane was given a red and sent off from the world cup competition.
Real’s new manager also addressed the other albatross from his 2006 world cup campaign in the form of his penalty against Gianilugi Buffon.
During what many considered a make or break moment Zidane chose to chip it over Buffon which at the time was seen as braggartly, overly risky, and disrespectful to one of the best goalkeepers playing at the time.
Zidane thinks that tactically he made the smart decision, and it paid off:
“There are still people today that tell me that I was crazy. But Buffon knew me. I played with him for five seasons at Juventus and he knew the exact spot in which I like to put my penalties. What would have been crazy is to shoot like I used to.”
If Zinedane can translate his player savvy into coaching savvy it may help to usher in a new era of victory for Los Blancos.