The France legend did not reveal what Materazzi said, but claimed it was "very personal" and concerned his mother and his sister. . . .
Zidane refused to say sorry to Materazzi and said he did not regret what he did after being provoked by the insults.
But Zidane, who was playing in his final game before quitting football, added: "They were very hard words. You hear them once and you try to move away.
"But then you hear them twice, and then a third time.
"Before anything else I am a man and some words are harder to hear than actions. I would rather have taken a blow to the face than hear that I can't regret what I did because it would mean that he (Materazzi) was right to say what he said."
"I want to apologise," he said. "But I can't regret it because if do that would be like admitting that he had every reason to say what he said. I can't do that because he was not right to say what he said."
Manliness on the pitch. Who would have thunk it?
Just as an aside: If this had happened on an American basketball court with some analagous type of insult, I bet public opinion would be running 80-20 in Zidane's favor.