It seems that it's OK to head-butt narcisistic Italians in shiny outfits provided that you are a member of an oppressed race and the designated target has made the kind of witty remark about your other half that nationals of this lanky country are justly famous for. Abbas Raza writes:
"As Western nations continue to dominate and oppress the third world by economic as well as military means and the cynical manipulation of governments, as they continue to wreak havoc on the environment, as the injustices of extreme inequality in the distributions of wealth continue to grow, it is to be expected that some will be driven to irrational anger, and will break the rules. And hit back. You can't just show everyone a red card. "
However, Marco Materazzi denies being an oppressor. He is, he insists, only a poor uncultured wop who worships his mamma and has no idea at all what an Islamic terrorist is.
Nevertheless across the Channel at least, the suspicion remains that ZZ was in some way standing up for the world's downtrodden (and Gallic masculine pride in general), as opposed to our own Wayne Rooney whose less emblematic downtreading merely involved standing up on a Portuguese man's testicles.