Argentine referee Horacio Elizondo has finally spoken about the World Cup 2006 infamous clash between French captain Zinadine Zidane and Marco Materazzi during the 2006 World Cup final in Berlin.
With France and Italy locked at 1-1 in extra time, Zidane was seen exchanging words with Azzurri defender Materazzi. And in few second the defender was seen crashing to the pitch, holding his chest.
Retired Elizondo spoke about the incident during a TED talk in the most candid manner, going in specific details on how he chose to red-card Zidane.
Everyone thought that the referee saw the replay of the incident and decided to show the French ace a red card, but surprisingly he said he did not see it.
He explained, “I saw Materazzi lying on the floor. I was a good 30 or 40 meters away. As I got close, I asked my two assistants if they had seen anything. Both of them told me they didn’t notice what went down.
“Then, my ‘guardian angel’ spoke to me via our intercommunication system. Fourth referee Medina Cantalejo saw it all and told me: ‘Zidane head-butted Materazzi’s chest!
“‘You really need to send him off!’ I didn’t believe him at first, but he urged me to take action.
“‘When we get to the hotel, you’ll see it. You will regret it if you don’t send him off. It was unbelievable,’” Elizondo recalled.
He concluded his presentation by stating that Medina’s narration of the incident was so passionate that he decided to listen to his words.