Former Italian defender, Marco Materazzi,
has finally revealed what led to the Zinedine Zidane headbutt incident in the final of the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

Zidane was sent off in the game that could have been the crowning of his career as a footballer, when he landed an headbutt in Materazzi’s chest.

Over the years, there has been a lot of rumours about what the Italian said to cause the reaction from the French man, and he has now revealed what happened.

“Zidane’s headbutt? I wasn’t expecting it in 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 apologised 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.”

“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.”

The two men were at the centre of the final from the start.

It was Materazzi’s foul on Florent Malouda that allowed Zidane open the scoring with a Panenka penalty.

The defender made amends for his earlier mistake, when he equalised 12 minutes later by heading in from Andrea Pirlo’s corner.

Zidane’s moment of madness came in the 110th minute of the game, with the Real Madrid manager’s final moment as a footballer, seeing him walk past the World Cup trophy with his head down.

Materazzi scored his country’s second penalty in the shoot out, as Italy were crowned champions after playing 1-1 in regulation time.