Zidane shows perfection isn't what it's made out to be and can still be the pits

June 07, 2018 - 09:00

Kicking Off with Paul Kennedy

Paul Kennedy. — VNS Photo Việt Thanh
Viet Nam News

By Paul Kennedy

We all strive to achieve perfection. A perfect life, perfect job, perfect partner. It’s not easy and many of us may fail in our attempts.

But sometimes what some of us might perceive as perfect may just be the opposite to the next person.
On the face of it, Hollywood superstar Brad Pitt and footballing genius Zinedine Zidane have absolutely nothing in common. 
One is a world famous actor who commands millions of dollars for every movie he appears in, the other one of the greatest footballers to ever kick a ball. 
About as far apart as it gets really.
But scrape away at the obvious and you may find a connection.
Pitt had a perfect life, perfect wife, and perfect family. But it wasn’t enough. He decided to give it all up and leave Angelina Jolie and his children behind.
Zidane to is currently involved in a different, yet equally painful split many of us can’t quite get our heads around.
A few weeks back he was on top of the world. His team had just beaten Liverpool in the final of the Champions League and for Zidane it was his third consecutive season lifting the trophy. A feat that’s never been matched. Then completely out of the blue he decides to call it a day and quit. 
He was the manager of a team that is just about perfect and is running the club he gracefully played for many years.
I’ve no idea how much money he was earning, but I’m guessing he wouldn’t need to route through his coin jar a few days before payday to get enough cash together for a beer and a bus ride home.
And managing The Galacticos when you were probably the greatest Galactico of all time must surely be as close as it gets to the perfect job. 

But as fans we just see one side of it. Maybe when Zizou walked into the dressing room after lifting the Champions League trophy a few weeks ago and took a look around he saw a brilliant team that is in danger of falling apart.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s best years are behind him, match winner Gareth Bale wants out, Luka Modric turns 33 at the start of next season, and Sergio Ramos is wanted in Egypt in connection with a serious assault against a member of the Royal family.
Sure, Real Madrid right now are the best team in Europe but will they be next year? Probably, but to do so, their manager needs to start again. Invest in new players is something so far Zindane hasn’t had to do. 
It’s been a while since I was involved in coaching a football team, but I genuinely think even with me at the helm, Real would have probably won trophies over the past few seasons. 
Zidane was a great player, one of the best, but is he really a great manager? From the outside looking in you might argue he had a perfect life. Perfect team, and perfect future mapped out for him. But now he’s quit maybe Zizou knows something we don’t. Living the perfect life can sometimes be, well, the pits. Just ask Brad. 
Tatt’s not good
Raheem Sterling is a great footballer, but you do wonder sometimes about his intelligence. 
A genius on the pitch doesn’t alway equate to one off it. 

Last week he revealed his latest tattoo. Mum? Chinese writing? Manchester City crest on his arm? Nope, none of the above. He’s decided to have a tattoo of a M16 assault rifle on his leg. In a world blighted by guns is this such a bright idea? 
He says it has a deeper meaning and is to do with the death of his father. Let’s hope so and hope beyond hope the only shooting he does, is into the back of the net.
Don’t bet on it
Finally a look at what’s making me chuckle on social media, and a special shout out to football fan Eddie Ballantyne for this one. He posted a photograph of England striker Harry Kane with the caption:
England are 12/1 to win the World Cup. For those of you who don’t understand gambling it means if you bet $10 on England to win, you’ll lose $10.
No prizes for guessing Eddie hails from Scotland.