French football star Zidane coaches Indonesian children


JAKARTA, AFP

French football star Zinedine Zidane had a kickabout with local children Saturday in a rural village in Indonesia during his three-day visit to the country.

Dressed in jeans and a polo shirt, Zinedane coached the children’s team and played with them for about 10 minutes in a friendly game that ended with a 1-1 score.

On his way to the coaching session in Subang in West Java, the international star dropped in for a chat with a local resident. National television showed him taking off his shoes before going into the village house.

Football is one of the most popular sports in Indonesia, a co-host of the Asian Cup which kicks off Saturday in Thailand.

Zidane, in Indonesia as part of his role as an ambassador for children’s programmes for French company Danone, met President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on Friday morning.

On Sunday, he will take part in a bid to break the national record for the highest number of games of “futsal”, the official indoor soccer game of FIFA, held at one time. He will then give a press briefing.

The former Real Madrid and Juventus midfielder retired from professional football after playing for France in the 2006 World Cup final.