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French Soccer: Zinedine Zidane

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photograph courtesy of zim182
photograph courtesy of zim182

French soccer legend Zinedine Zidane briefly came out of retirement this past weekend to play in a charity match in Thailand. The match was organized by Adidas, one of Zidane’s many corporate sponsors.

In France, the icon’s celebrity has barely tapered off since the infamous head-butt in last year’s World Cup final. Despite Zidane’s seemingly violent streak, he continues to be the focus of several marketing campaigns. These include a relationship with French corporate heavyweight Danone. “Zizou” is a staple on highway billboards, TV commercials, and on both the sports and tabloid pages.

These days in France, Zidane is known for his humanitarianism, celebrity, football legend, and philanthropy. Everywhere else, it seems, he is known for one, wild, ram-like head-butt.

About the author

Enchanted by maps at a young age, Michael's first voyages were of the unglamourous variety (think Florida, Subarus, and talking mice). It was in an Australian hostel, while sleeping on a bare mattress, that he discovered the value of quality budget travel. Following a six month sejour on Australia's Sunshine Coast, Michael finished his studies at Hunter College in New York and moved to Paris. In Paris, Mike edits and writes for The Paris Times and checks out cheap sleeps for EuroCheapo. When not walking the streets of Paris pretending to be Ernest Hemingway, Michael enjoys penning short stories and playing the didjeridoo.

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