Facts about Zinedine Zidane You Probably Didn’t Know
And what these facts might be? Do you know what the name "Zinedine Zidane" means in Arabic? What is Zidane’s net worth? or how he and his wife met? What do Zidane’s sons do in life and how many children does the Frenchman have?
Where was Zinedine Zidane born? And what about Zidane’s sister and brothers? How many siblings does he have and what they do in their life? This post aims to not only answer all these questions but also to delve a little deeper into the facts about Zinedine Zidane.
Facts about Zinedine Zidane, the legendary former French footballer
We just start with Zidane’s biography; in fact, a short one, and then continue to other facts about the former legendary French footballer.
Zinedine Zidane’s Biography (short)
Born in June 1972 (aged 48 by now) in La Castellane, Marseille, France, Zinedine Yazid Zidane known as Zinedine Zidane or Zidane, is a French football legend who played for top-tier clubs such as Real Madrid and Juventus during his footballing career. He currently manages Real Madrid, and is among those football managers who have managed the team they already played for during their career as a player.
Zidane’s family were among immigrants who had immigrated from the village of Aguemoune in North Algeria to South France in 1953 before the start of the Algerian war. The immigrants were called “Beurs” which is a slang term for Arabs in French.
Where was Zinedine Zidane born? Zidane was born in La Castellane, a crime-driven community in the south of France near Marseille mostly known for its high unemployment, crime and suicide rates. Despite this, Zidane was raised in good conditions with his father having a full-time job as a warehouseman.
However, he was sometimes subject to insults that were aimed at his race. Maybe that’s why, as once revealed by the French legendary footballer, that he struggled with other boys and didn’t have a good attitude at school.
Considered as on the of the greatest footballers of all time, Zidane is a Muslim and from Algerian descent. He started football from the age of 5 when he played the game with children in the neighborhood at Place Tartane which was a 80-by-12-yard plaza and the main square of a housing complex.
Zidane’s footballing idols as a child were former Marseille players, Blaž Slišković, Enzo Francescoli and Jean-Pierre Papin. One interesting fact about Zidane is that he also did other sports as a boy like skateboarding, cycling, and Judo - he had a green belt in the martial sport.
Zidane started his youth career with AS Foresta in 1981 and played until the age of 14 for two other clubs, namely US Saint-Henri and SO Septèmes-les-Vallons, before he joined Cannes in 1986 with whom he remained until 1992 - 3 years as a youth player and 3 years as a senior one.
Even at Cannes, Zidane’s proneness to insults aimed at his race continued and made him do unreasonable things . He once worked as a cleaner for a few weeks at the same club as a punishment for punching one of his opponents who had mocked his origins.
Zidane scored his first senior career goal for Cannes in February 1991 in a match against Nantes that ended in Cannes 2-1 win. After the match, Zidane was rewarded a car for his first goal for the club by Cannes chairman, Alain Pedretti, who had promised the reward to the young Zidane earlier. Zidane served Bordeaux for 4 years after his spell at Cannes and before he joined the Serie A giants, Juventus, in 1996.
Zinedine Zidane’s Parents
Who are Zidane’s parents? Zinedine Zidane is the youngest child of Smail and Malika Zidane. Zidane’s father had a full-time job as a warehouseman and also as a night watch at a department store; his mother was and is a housewife. As you might have already guessed from this post, Zidane is of Algerian origin.
About his Arab origin, Zidane once said: “I have an affinity with the Arabic world. I have it in my blood, via my parents. I’m very proud of being French, but also very proud of having these roots and this diversity.” Zidane always refers to his father as the “guiding light” of his footballing career since he thinks he owes his success in the professional football to his father’s strict style of upbringing.
Zinedine Zidane’s sister and brothers
Zinedine Zidane has one sister and three brothers. Lila Zidane (Zinedine Zidane’s sister) is the executive secretary of Zidane Diffusion, a joint stock company that specializes in leasing intellectual property and similar products. Madjid Zidane, the oldest brother of Zinedine, is 56 years old and works as a maintenance worker at a swimming pool.
Farid Zidane who resembles Zinedine the most among his other siblings, was the managing director of Zidane Diffusion. He died of cancer at the age of 54. And finally Noureddine Zidane, acts as the right hand to his younger brother, Zinedine Zidane, accompanies him in his public appearances, and works almost like an agent for him.
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While a player at Cannes, Zidane met his future wife, Veronique Fernandez, who is of Spanish origin. They got married in 1994, and by now they have four sons together all of whom are also footballers. So, Zidane’s family is made up of six people: two parents and four sons. They are Enzo, Luca, Theo, and Elyaz born in 1995, 1998, 2002, and 2005, respectively.
Enzo is a midfielder at C.D. Aves; Luca is the goalkeeper of Racing Santander; Theo is a midfielder at Juvenil A (Barcelona’s youth academy) and Elyaz a defender at Cadete B (Real Madrid’s youth academy).
Zidane and his wife share one thing together and that is both of them come from a family of immigrants and naturally both of them know what poverty is. Zidane’s family have done much to help the poor - the reason is quite clear - like sponsoring charity events, helping orphans, and Zidane playing in charity games. “You don't need a reason to help people,” Zidane once said in an interview.
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Where Does Zidane’s Nickname “Zizou” Come From?
Zizou! That’s Zidane’s nickname. Nobody knows where that nickname comes exactly from. Some say a friend of Zidane once called him Zizou, because Zidane reminded him of another professional footballer known also as Zizou. Yet some other say the easiest nickname that came to mind was Zizi.
However, many fans shied away from using Zizi because in French “Zizi” is a slang term referring to the male private organ. So, the fans invented Zizou to call their champion. The same nickname that they chanted when Zidane was back to France after winning the 1998 FIFA World Cup.
Zidane, One of the Most Expensive Players in the World
If Zidane’s record was not broken by Cristiano Ronaldo, He would still be the most expensive footballer ever in the history of Real Madrid. In its own time, Zidane’s transfer fee of €77.5 million was a world record, and Zidane was at least considered as one of the most expensive players at his own time.
Zidane is still considered as one of the most expensive footballers in the history of football; he ranks 20th among 50 footballers on the list of the most expensive footballers ever. The fact that Zidane was transferred to Juventus - prior to Real Madrid - for a mere transfer fee of around €3.4 million, shows how greatly he performed at the Serie A club that he made such a great leap in value.
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The Most Number of Cards in the World Cup History
A violent player?! We don’t call him that! However, the fact is true. Zidane along with Cafu and Rafael Marquez is a record holder in terms of the most number of cards received in the World Cup history. He received 6 cards in total (2 reds and 4 yellows) during his World Cup appearances.
And as you might probably know, the red card Zidane was shown in 2006 World Cup final against Italy for headbutting Marco Materatzi is the most notable red card he received not only in the World Cup but also throughout his career.
Zidane’s Honors and Achievements
Too many! In fact, more than 70 both as a player and manager; French Division 1 Player of the Year in 1995-96 season, Ballon d'Or in 1998, FIFA World Player of the Year in 1998, 2000, and 2003, Serie A Footballer of the Year in 2000-01 season, LaLiga Best Foreign Player in 2001-02 season, and Golden Foot Legends Award in 2008 are just a handful of awards Zidane has won as a player.
And as a manager, Zidane has won LaLiga title in 2016-17 with Real Madrid, UEFA Champions League from 2015 to 2018, and FIFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup in 2016 and 2017. Zidane was also named LaLiga Manager of the Month in April 2016, and May 2017, the Best FIFA Football Coach in 2017, and Globe Soccer Awards Best Coach of the Year in the same year. And the list continues!
"I have won many awards and I am very happy about this, but I am not the best player in the world," said Zidane once about his achievements.
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Zinedine Zidane is the Most Beloved French Footballer
According to a poll by the French newspaper, Journal du Dianche, Zinedine Zidane was voted the most beloved French footballer of all time. In Another poll by French TV channel, TF1, Zidane was elected as the best player of the French League in history.
Of course, there are other great names like Michel Platini, Lilian Thuram, Thierry Henry, and Jean-Pierre Papin, but Zidane is no less than them in terms of popularity and even more.
According to a stats website in UK (yougov.co.uk) Zinedine Zidane is the 1170th most popular person in the world of all time, and how Zidane’s fans describe him? By these words: winner, great performer, and technically brilliant, although he’s still best known as his nickname “Zizou” among his fans.
Zidane is One of the Highest Paid Managers in the World
Zinedine Zidane is the fifth highest paid football manager in the world with a monthly salary of €1.4 million. The first place belongs to Diego Simeone (Atletico Madrid’s manager) with €3.6 million monthly.
After Simeone comes Manchester City’s Pep Guardiola with a monthly salary of €1.94 million. And after Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp of Liverpool and Jose Mourinho of Tottenham sit jointly on the third position with a €1.46 million monthly salary.
So Zidane could be, in fact, the fourth highest paid manager in the world - if we count Klopp and Mourinho as one. And Zidane is only by €60,000 behind the two aforementioned coaches which is by no means a high amount in the football world. If he could fill up the deficit, he would be the second or third highest paid football manager in the world.
And the interesting fact here is that the next manager after Zinedine Zidane, namely Antonio Conte of Inter Milan with a monthly salary of €1.38 million, is only by €20,000 behind the Frenchman, while the next position plunges suddenly in terms of numbers; that position belongs to Quique Setién of Barcelona with only €500,000 per month.
Zidane is the First French Manager of Real Madrid
Real Madrid have had around 43 managers throughout their history with only one of them being French: Zinedine Zidane. In fact, Zidane is the first French manager Real Madrid has ever had since its foundation 110 years ago, and the second most successful manager of the LaLiga giants in terms of the number of trophies won with ten trophies won in only four years.
Zidane managed Real Madrid Castilla (Real’s second division team) for 2 years from 2014 to 2016, and since 2016 has been the Real’s senior team manager. During this time, Zidane has won one LaLiga title, two Supercopa de España (Spain Super Cup), three UEFA Champions League titles, two UEFA Super Cup and two FIFA Club World Cup trophies.
Adidas, France Telecom, Audi, Ford, Volvic, Christian Dior, and even Lego are a few of the most renowned companies Zinedine Zidane has had endorsements with.
The endorsements Zidane has had with several companies have earned him at least €8 million which is even higher than the salary he receives. Thanks to all the bucks the endorsements brought in for Zidane, he became the sixth highest paid footballer in the world in 2006.
Zidane has also appeared in a commercial for Louis Vuitton - a French fashion house and luxury retailer - where he played table football with football legends ever, Pele and Maradona. In fact, it was with Pele, because Maradona kept all waiting for 4 hours! Zidane also features on the cover of the Ultimate Edition of FIFA 20 video game.
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Zinedine Zidane’s Wife, Veronique Zidane
Born to Spanish parents in November 1971 in Rodez, France, Veronique Fernandez Lentisco known as Veronique Zidane since her marriage to Zinedine Zidane in 1994 is a former dancer who left her studies at the university (in the field of biology) to pursue her passion: dancing, though she also quitted that a few years later to play her supportive role in her husband’s footballing career.
Zidane and Veronique met each other in 1989 when they lived in a strictly-gender-separated neighborhood. They saw each other from time to time until one day Zidane let out a “hello” that actually ignited their relationship.
Five years later, in 1994, the couple married to each other at Bordeaux town hall. One interesting fact about Veronique Zidane is that she even hated football before she married Zinedine Zidane, though that hate also changed to a liking after her marriage to the Frenchman.
Zinedine Zidane’s Net Worth
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Zinedine Zidane’s estimated net worth until the end of 2019 is something around $70 million. This net worth has definitely come from Zidane’s salary as a manager that has been doubled since 2017, his investments and the endorsements he has already done with brands like Adidas, Audi, and France Telecom.
They say Zidane has several luxury cars including a Range Rover worth $53,000, an Audi worth $100,000, and a Ferrari worth $200,000. He also owns a private yacht but not yet a private plane, though he is able to! The Frenchman currently lives with his family in a mansion worth $2.5 million located at Madrid.
Zinedine Zidane’s Charity Acts
So many that we cannot count them all here, but here are a few of them: Zidane played in a charity match in Thailand that raised $7750 for a children AIDS charity called Keuydaroon. One year later in 2008, Zidane took part in the Match Against Poverty - a friendly match held since 2003 to raise funds for UNDP (United Nations Development Program).
Zinedine Zidane has been a UN Goodwill Ambassador since 2001; in June 2010, he also played for the Rest of the World Team in Soccer Aid which is a British charity event to raise funds for UNICEF.
Zidane took part in another charity match in 2013 against Real Madrid as a member of Manchester United Legends Team to raise funds for the Manchester United Foundation projects helping disadvantaged young people in Manchester.
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As you might have guessed from Zidane’s roots, he is a Muslim but a non-practicing one; and despite this, he was named as one of the most influential Muslims in the world by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre of Jordan that once observed Zidane’s modest character as a factor that “has endeared him to a wider public.”
One interesting fact about Zidane and his religion is that although he’s non-practicing Muslims, he himself once revealed in a TV interview that when he played for Juventus, he read Ayat al-Kursi - a short verse from Quran - to himself before each game. Maybe to take advantage of the Quranic verse magical effects or? As Zidane himself once revealed, in his opinion, non-practicing doesn’t mean non-believing.
What does Zidane’s name mean in Arabic?
That’s a good question! To many, Zidane’s name is just a simple Arabic name, but did you know that there is a meaning to his name? Here is what the French beloved footballer’s name mean: Zinedine is actually the combination of Zayn and adeen in Arabic, with the former meaning beauty and the latter the path or way. So Zaynadeen (Zinedine) means the beauty of the path or the beautiful one of the path.
You know Zidane’s complete name is Zinedine Yazid Zidane. Yazid means the one who increases and Zidane is actually Zaydan in Arabic which means overabundant twice but not twice overabundant – there is a little difference between the two if you consider them closely.
So Zinedine Zidane means the beautiful one of the path (the path of football if you like!), the one who increases (advances in the profession) and the one who is overabundant twice (in talent and ability).
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Zidnane’s headbutt in 2006 World Cup Final
Zidane’s headbutt, that’s what all of us know about, but if we are to Zinedine Zidane facts, then not mentioning his headbutt is a crime! They said, in that incident, Materazzi had insulted Zidane’s mother, but an interview with the Italian international ten years later in 2016 revealed something else: The Italian man had actually insulted Zidane’s sister, not his mother.
Materazzi said in the interview that since he had lost his mother when he was 15, he never insulted one’s mother including Zidane’s. The Italian defender never clarified what he had actually said to Zidane in that incident but he revealed that it was something stupid, yet insisting that his insult was far less insulting than the words one might hear on the streets of Naples, Milan, or Paris.
Zinedine Zidane’s stats
The last thing we are to is Zinedine Zidane’s stats. The former French legendary footballer is 48 years old by now (2020). He’s 185 cm tall and weighs 79 kg. So, he’s still a slim type.
Zidane played for four clubs, namely Cannes, Bordeaux, Juventus, and Real Madrid, during his footballing career as a player that lasted 17 years - from 1989 to 2006.
Zinedine Zidane also played for France national team from 1994 to 2006 and scored 31 goals in the 108 appearances he made for his country’s national team. At the club level, he made 506 appearances for the clubs he played for and scored 95 goals for them. From 2014 on, Zidane has acted as Real Madrid manager, and he is still the LaLiga giants boss.