The father of Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane, Smaïl Zidane, has revealed details of the extravagant gifts that his son was offered by his former club in exchange for scoring goals during the Frenchman’s playing days.
In an extract from the soon-to-be-published autobiography of Zidane Sr. – which is currently being serialised in La Parisien newspaper – Smaïl tells of how the legendary midfielder was made promises of lavish presents when he played for Cannes FC between 1988 and 1992 on the condition that he paid the team back with good performances.
Shopping trips and sports cars
According to Zidane’s dad, who fled Algeria for Paris in 1953 before the start of the Algerian War, such incentives included shopping trips and even brand new sports cars.
‘Zidane, if you score a goal in your next game, I'll let you go to the best clothing store in Cannes and let you pick everything you like", Zidane Sr. writes in his book, giving an example of the kind of things coaches at Cannes would say to motivate his son.
‘It was nice of him, but I found this method of motivation a little curious,’ he recalls.
‘Later, in 1991, the president of Cannes, Alain Pedretti, made the same promise: a car if you score a goal! And he did!’
Smaïl Zidane’s autobiography is called 'Sur les chemins de pierres' (The Stone Road) and will be hitting shops soon.