Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Marco: I Insulted Zidane, but Not Racially

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Marco: I Insulted Zidane, but Not Racially

Article excerpt

Byline: ADRIAN WARNER

MARCO MATERAZZI has admitted insulting Zinedine Zidane prior to the head-butt which saw the French captain's World Cup end in ignominy on Sunday night but has denied his comments were racially motivated.

Zidane lost his cool during extra-time in Berlin and charged at Italy defender Materazzi, butting him in the chest.

Theories have abounded as to what Materazzi might have said to provoke such a response and the former Everton defender concedes he did make an offensive remark.

Materazzi, 32, told Italian sports newspaper Gazetta dello Sport: "I held his shirt for a few seconds only, then he turned to me and talked to me, jeering.

"He looked at me with a huge arrogance and said, 'If you really want my f****** shirt I'll give it to you afterwards'. I replied with an insult - that's true."

Materazzi has not elaborated on what he did say, but one source suggested he responded with: 'I'd rather take the shirt off your wife'. …

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