Thursday, September 14, 2006

Let's Objectify: Zinedine Zidane

Roswitha has very kindly asked me to blog about Zidane as part of the ongoing “Project Objectify”. And me being me, Zidane being Zidane and this being a legitimate reason to dedicate a long rambling post to him, how could I ever say no?

So, Zinedine Yazid Zidane. Or, why I started watching football.

I don’t think there is any aspect of Zidane’s life, his skill, his technique that hasn’t already been analyzed to death. And therefore, nothing I can say about Zidane on any of those would be new. In any case, what I do want to blog about is my absolute adoration for Zizou.

Growing up, I wasn’t much enamored by football. Cricket was my sport of choice. My first cogent memory of football is the 1998 World Cup. I remember watching the final. Brazil vs. France. Everyone I knew was supporting Brazil. I was supporting France, for no other reason than that, well, it was France. I remember those two goals. I remember thinking that Zidane made for such a strange footballer. That bald patch on his head – it just didn’t fit. I didn’t become a football convert after that though. But I did remember Zidane. He was one of the few footballers who I knew by name. Frankly, who can forget a name like Zidane?

Then, I came to college. Cricket was non existent and everyone followed football. And one day I sat with a friend and watched a recording of that Champions League Final. And, omg, was I convert.
To see Zidane score, to watch him on the field, his roulettes - that is pure joy. And pure sport. There is such beauty in his movements, such grace, fluidity and elegance.

That Zidane has often been compared to a ballet dancer is not strange, because a dancer he is. And then there are his close ups during a match. Sweat drips off him by bucketfuls (it’s a result of his thalassemia). There is rarely a smile. Only complete, absolute focus. It’s almost as if you can watch him out thinking his opponents, strategizing. Zidane wasn’t at his best during his last couple of years at Real. He admitted as much. But he was still better than most players could dream of being.

And then there was the World Cup. How could people write him off?? I didn’t. Though I sat in perpetual fear of France being knocked out during stage one. And then in the knock out stage, it was almost like he was another player. He was back.
Before the final, Zidane said he wanted to dedicate the team’s great run to their fans – but only those who supported them from the beginning. I read that and squeed “Me!!Mememememememe!!” Yep, that was a shout out to me from Zizou himself.

When I started watching Zizou play, his head wasn’t yet clean shaven. That bald patch made his moves seem even more surreal. He was gawky off the field (He still is. Andrew Hussey once wrote that he sits delicately. Like a girl, with his legs crossed.) And he wasn’t considered cool or a hot football stud.

And I ask you this: did anyone see this mans face? Have more gorgeous intense green eyes ever existed?? I think not.
He is beautiful. Does he not look like a Michelangelo sculpture? The chiseled face, square jaw line, intense eyes, bald pate. And he has the cutest booty. Ever. And when he smiles the way his eyes crinkle. Gosh, I just drool.
As final proof of Zizou’s utter desirability, the picture below. How many people can manage to look incredibly hot and sexy in a purple and white t-shirt? I rest my case.

I know it’s become almost impossible to mention Zizou without the World Cup finals being brought up. In any case, I have already blogged about the final and the craziness that followed before. Gosh, I miss the way my blog had turned into a mini Zizou shrine during the WC.

Also, Zizou’s moved on and I wish everyone else would as well. Please take note Marco (
he was supremely arrogant and physical taunting doesn’t count) Materazzi and Sepp Blatter (Robben Island, my foot).
I just have to say though, can you imagine if Zidane actually didn’t have a sister? He could’ve turned around to Materazzi’s comment of “I’d rather have your sister” and said “Well that’s too bad, you little jackass cos I don’t have one!” GAH!! Oh well.

Other ‘Project Objectify’ posts on
Theirry Henry, Fabio Cannavaro and Rafael Nadal.


roswitha said...

Oh, BRAVA. I think your post exemplifies exactly what Aishwarya was talking about when she confessed to being the sort of person who'd supported the same team since she was 6, and so on. This is a very moving and commendable objectification. And thank you for all the gorgeous pictures!

(Incidentally, I find it not a little awesome that your blog includes frequent mentions of Ralph Fiennes and Daniel Day-Lewis, both of whom are infinitely objectifiable in my book. We must have a thing for men with chiseled features and intense, brittle personae. Who knew?)

Szerelem said...

Thank you!!very glad you liked it.
It was fun posting and I have decided to objectify people more often on the blog. Perhaps a meme should be started - objectify your fave hot male, or some such.

Men with chiseled features and intense, brittle personae - aren’t they the best of their kind?

Aishwarya said...

...thank you. Breathtaking, picwise and just lovely and moving textwise. :)

MockTurtle said...

You have a lovely writing style.
Glad you spoke of Zidane being almost delicate and crossing his legs like a girl, while also being a hunk. Sort of in line with my point on your last post about Fiennes and Day-Lewis also being masculinely effeminate.
So there Ghost!

GhostOfTomJoad said...

"Men with chiseled features and intense, brittle personae"

Men with tragic flaws, eh? :-)

MT: I know. I got told off already :-)

Szerelem said...

aishwarya: thanks! and it was my pleasure :D

MT:thank you! Zidane is actually very gawky off the feild. Very shy and extremely sof spoken. And he often ends interviews with statements like “I love you mum!” Who’d have thunk, huh? Its also why when he does turn violent its quite shocking.

ghost: Men with tragic flaws? Never thought of it that way...but i guess youre right. makes them more attractive i guess or more human. Look at Zidanes headbutt....i think it has added to his legend.