Kerala Blasters fans plan hilarious protest against Materazzi at home derby

Kerala Blasters fans plan hilarious protest against Materazzi at home derby

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Kerala Blasters fans plan to wear Zinedine Zidane masks during the next south Indian derby against Chennaiyin on Nov 9 in Kochi after Marco Materazzi got involved in a scuffle between his team’s Manuele Blasi and Blasters’ Kervens Belfort following the goalless draw last month.

Chennaiyin coach Materazzi, who served out a one-match suspension against Mumbai City FC for the ‘misconduct’, was involved in an infamous incident with Zidane in the 2006 World Cup final that saw the enigmatic Frenchman sent off after head-butting the Italian. Italy went on to win on penalties.

Kerala Blasters fans Abdul Hadhi and Asheem have decided to protest against Materazzi by distributing 35,000 Zidane masks for Kerala fans to wear when the teams meet in Kochi.

“We want to send a message to the coach (Materazzi). And we thought long and hard about how we can do it as fans sitting in the stands. We want to protest against the violence but want to do it as peacefully as possible,” said Hadhi as reported by Sportskeeda.

“But this is an issue which needs to be brought to the attention of the world and the ISL. A coach cannot get involved like this.

“I am sure everyone remembers the incident that happened in the World Cup final, where this coach got one of the greats of the game sent off. He affected one of the greatest players in the world, who reacted to it. We want to show him that we may also have to react to it. And that the world remembers Zidane and not Materazzi.”

The fans took to social media to spread the word about the process. The text on the image is loosly translated as "Friends, I will be at Kaloor (Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium) with these masks if you are ready to buy it."

European football witnesses similar protests from time to time and now India is joining in. How this will impact the ISL remains to be seen, but the initiative confirms the Blasters fans as one of the most involved in ISL.

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