Zinedine Zidane has lashed out at the author of a book which suggests he and several other 1998 World Cup winners may have been involved in doping practices.
Former France team doctor Jean-Pierre Paclet published Implosion last month, in which he alleged that “blood sample tests on several France players just before the 1998 World Cup revealed anomalies”.
He also said: “There is room for suspicion, given the clubs where some of the players are employed, notably in the Italian league.”
However, former Juventus midfielder Zidane has played down the allegations, suggesting Paclet was using shock tactics in order to boost sales of his book.
“It’s not nice to hear, and it’s unfortunate, but that’s life,” Zidane told TV5 Monde.
“People like that are just looking to boost their book sales by adding some shocking content. It’s not new.”
Zidane was with Juventus from 1996 to 2001, winning three Serie A titles and one European Cup in the 1990s, when the club was also embroiled in a drugs scandal.
The situation led to a trial for Juve chief executive Antonio Giraudo and team doctor Riccardo Agricola.
At a trial in 2004 Italian prosecutors said that although the substances in question were legal, they were applied in such a way that they produced similar effects to illegal performance-enhancing drugs.
Zidane admitted at the trial to receiving drugs at the Italian club, but claimed to court officials he was told they were vitamins.