Zidane May Be Stripped Of Golden Ball Award – FIFA

Jacob Cherian
Rome, Italy, July 11 (AHN) – FIFA may strip French captain Zinedine Zidane of his World Cup best player award, according to the football body’s president Seppp Blatter. Zidane was announced as the winner of the Golden Ball award, a day after the World Cup final.

The final saw the French superstar sent off the pitch in the second period of extra time. He was involved in an infamous foul involving Italian defender Marco Materazzi.

Italy went on to defeat France 5-3 on penalties.

FIFA has launched a subsequent investigation into the ‘head-butting’ incident between Zidane and Materazzi.

Zidane claimed that he reacted to repeated insults targeted at his family by Materazzi.

Blatter affirmed that he would consider the results of the FIFA probe before making a decision on whether Zidane should be stripped of the prestigious award.

He told La Repubblica, "It’s not FIFA that decides who wins this award but an international committee of journalists."

He added, "But the FIFA executive committee has the responsibility of intervening when it is a matter of conduct which goes against the ethics of the sport."

"That is why I gave the orders to our disciplinary commission to investigate what happened."

A voting deadline by journalists covering the World Cup for best player was set for midnight on the on the day of the final.

However, most journalists submitted their votes earlier to facilitating concentrating on the final match.

Blatter told AFP that Zidane’s behavior had shocked him personally.