Football for the couch potatoes


Wednesday, July 12, 2006


the couch potato pundit is still in shock as he recaps the World Cup

Zinedine Zidane, unquestionably the greatest player i have ever seen play, has given us a world cup to remember - in more ways than one.

It had been a tournament where the oldies were busy shutting up their critics. Ronaldo was still looking like one of the most dangerous strikers as the tournament progressed. It speaks volumes of his great ability that he was unfit and overweight while at it.

Figo, written off as too old and too slow, lead his country, albeit a cynical Portugal, to the Semi-Finals.

Even Cannavaro, the imperious captain of Italy, was not spared criticism prior to the tournament. How things have changed.

And then, Zizou.

He still had the touch, the vision and the flair but the biggest concern was his inability to lead his teams, both domestic and international, to success this season.

There were even murmurs that he didn't deserve his place in the team after France, without the suspended Zidane, scrapped their way past Togo. The Spanish boasted that they would retire the great man after their clash with France. It was almost as if Zidane had enough, and set out not just to win the World Cup, but to shut up his critics. Stupid critics i might add.

A goal to finish off the Spaniards, a masterclass against the Brazilians and the matchwinner against Portugal and it seemed the old Zidane was back. His fire was lit again.

His performances were brilliant displays of the skill, vision and leadership qualities which have made him the best player of his generation. That penalty in the final, only he would dare to attempt.

While i've never seen Maradona or Pele play live, i can only be thankful to have witnessed the career of Zidane, one of the all time greats.

Unfortunately, all we can think about now is the headbutt. I hope that's not how we'd remember him.


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