First off, this camera angle (tip of the hat to Moin) from Brasilian TV best shows the talking that went on before Zidane lost his mind; after Materazzi's last comments you can see ZZ turn and think to himself in a gangsta Ron Burgundy way: "What did you say?".
Some are claiming that Materazzi said something about Zizou being a terrorist, but Materazzi himself has denied this, hilarously claiming that he does not even know what the word terrorist means, which 5 years after 9/11 is just so absurd that it is funny.
Intrepid DAB reporter (and starting FC Kanu libero) Moin brings us this:
A Brazilian newspaper hired 2 deaf lip-readers and said that Materazzi said something along the lines of "your sister is a whore." Which doesn't seem any worse than anything else Zidane might have heard on that day.
According to Channel 4 news (in France I think), the French camp has claimed that what Materazzi said was actually "your mother is a whore", which, on the surface didn't seem that bad, except when you accompany that with the claim that Zidane just found out earlier in the day that his mother is seriously ill and in the hospital.
The Daily Mail ties most of the rumors together, and is claiming that:
First Marco Matterazzi called the French star the Italian equivalent of 'n*****', and then insulted both his mother and his Muslim background by saying he is the 'son of a terrorist whore'.
The (London) Times hired a lipreader who confirms the latter part of the Daily Mail allegation:
After an exhaustive study of the match video, and with the help of an Italian translator, Rees claimed that Materazzi called Zidane “the son of a terrorist whore” before adding “so just f*** off” for good measure, supporting the natural assumption that the Frenchman must have been grievously insulted. As the son of two Algerian immigrants, the 34-year-old is proud of his North African roots, dedicating France’s 1998 World Cup win to “all Algerians who are proud of their flag and all those who have made sacrifices for their family but who have never abandoned their own culture”, so such a slur would certainly explain, if not justify, his violent response.
Another rumor found here (tip of the hat to DCTrojan) claims:
Rumor has it that Materazzi called Zidane's father a 'harki' - the Arabic term for Algerians who fought for France against Algeria during the occupation. It's beyond all insults, the ultimate traitor. If this is true it means that they did their research - Le Pen suggested the same thing 9 years ago and in the next game Zidane stomped on a Saudi player who repeated it.
Yet another bit of speculation here, along with admittance by MM that he insulted him but claims that the insult was normal for football.
I am as interested as anyone else to find out what Materazzi said to Zidane, but for me the provocation defense is pretty weak: 1) shit talking of various levels goes on all the time in these soccer matches, both club and international. 2) He shoud have learned his lesson from the 1998 World Cup, where a SAudi Arabian player made a remark about his Algerian/Arab heritage and he reacted by raking his cleats on the dude's leg - he was given a 2 match ban. 8 years later and as team captain there is simply no excuse 3) He is a veteran, been through all this stuff, is the captain, it is the biggest match in the world, and also the final match of his career. No excuses whatsoever. I guess he has never heard of Woody Hayes...
Sorry to say it, because he is a soccer God, but plain and simple, Zidane got what he deserved. I don't care how much of a reputation Mr. Materazzi has for unsavory behavior on the field. It seems like too big of a shitstorm has been caused that it won't come out in the next 48 hours, so we'll just wait and see.