I do not agree with ANY attempts to justify Zidane's conduct and the conclusion of this article.
Why Today I Wear My Zidane Jersey
by Dave Zirin
Imagine Michael Jordan in his last game, with the score tied in overtime, knocking out his defender with a punch to the throat. Imagine Derek Jeter in game seven of the World Series, at bat with the bases loaded, thrashing the opposing team's catcher over the head with his bat. Our collective shock would only be exceeded by disappointment. No one, fan or foe, would want to a see a great player end their career in an act that speaks to the worst impulses of sports: when hard competition spills over into violence.
Now imagine if Jordan and Jeter claimed they were provoked with a racial slur. Does their violence become understandable? Even excusable? Herein lies the case of French National team captain, the great Zinedine Zidane.
Zidane, competing in his last professional match, was kicked out of the World Cup final in overtime for flattening Italian player Marco Materazzi with the head-butt heard around the world.
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