The United Arab Emirate Qatar will be hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup event. Ahead of that big event, the tiny oil rich country has imported a bronze statue of the infamous head-butting incident between France’s Zinedine Zidane and Marco Materazzi which took place in the final game of the event at the 110th minute. Italy went on to win their 4th World Cup title after the penalty kicks by a score of 5-3.
The QMA’s director of public art told the Doha News:
“Yes, we expect a lot of people to want to take photos with it, and of it.
It’s an impressive piece. It’s a huge sculpture, and it’s done in the same style as Greek Mythological statues, but this glorifies human defects instead. It shows that although we sometimes treat footballers like gods, they’re not – they’re just human beings.”
The statue commemorating the Zidane head-butting incident stands sixteen feet tall and was first unveiled at Paris’ Pompidou art museum in July 2012. For Zidane, the incident lead to his retirement from professional soccer. However, he has remained close to the game and regularly plays for the Real Madrid Veterans team. In 2010, Zidane served as an ambassador for Qatar in their attempt to secure the 2022 World Cup event. Upon hearing of Qatar’s victory, Zidane was said to have expressed gratitude for the decision.
For his part, Marco Materazzi retired from the sport in 2011. Since then, there have been rumors that he would return to the sport. The fact is that both men remain well-respected in their countries of origin. In that respect, the statue of Zidane & Materazzi aptly immortalizes two legends of the sport.
Zidane headbutt statue
Qatar bought the 16-foot Zidane headbutt statue