Page last updated at 17:45 GMT, Thursday, 6 March 2008

Materazzi wins Daily Star apology

Zinedine Zidane headbutts Marco Materazzi to the ground
The Daily Star accepted its coverage of the incident was wrong

Italian footballer Marco Materazzi has won an apology and undisclosed damages from the Daily Star over claims he racially insulted Zinedine Zidane.

The newspaper story alleged he called the French player's mother a "terrorist whore" during the 2006 World Cup final, resulting in Zidane headbutting him.

The Star said it apologised for the "distress and embarrassment".

Inter Milan defender Materazzi is still seeking damages at the High Court from the Sun and the Daily Mail newspapers.

He said: "I really appreciate the apology published in The Daily Star. The truth is now coming out - finally."

Damages and costs

The Italian international launched proceedings over coverage in the 11 July 2006 edition of the Daily Star.

The newspaper ran a series of articles along with a front-page photograph of Materazzi captioned with a speech bubble of the alleged taunt.

In its apology, the Daily Star said: "We now accept that Mr Materazzi did not say anything of a racist nature nor use the description of Zidane's mother such as to goad the Frenchman.

"We apologise to Mr Materazzi for the distress and embarrassment caused by our allegations. We have agreed to pay him damages and his legal costs."

Following the headbutting incident, in July 2006, Materazzi was handed a two-match ban by world governing body Fifa.

France's captain Zidane, playing his last match before retiring from football, was banned for three games and fined 3,260.

At the time he claimed he was provoked after Materazzi had "insulted his mother". But he has never specified exactly what Materazzi said to him and has refused to apologise to his opponent.

Materazzi later stated that Zidane's sister was the subject.

"I was tugging his shirt, he said to me 'if you want my shirt so much I'll give it to you afterwards,' and I answered that I'd prefer his sister," he said.

Materazzi breaks Zidane silence
05 Sep 06 |  Internationals
Zidane's red mist
09 Jul 06 |  World Cup 2006

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