Zizou's fine mess

BOB MACKIN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 2:37 PM ET

Retired French soccer great Zinedine Zidane is waiving the 200,000 Euros owed him so his troubled Canadian tour can pay its bills, according to promoter Ahcene Adlani.

Adlani said yesterday that only 700 to 1,000 tickets were sold for the 7 p.m. Sunday match with and against Vancouver amateurs at Swangard Stadium.

Adlani originally advertised stars like Samuel Eto'o, Arrigo Sacchi and Franco Baresi for matches in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.

A July 4 match at B.C. Place Stadium was canceled after Zidane apparently injured his back while picking up his child during the Canada Day fireworks. Adlani said approximately 8,000 tickets were sold for $29 to $99 each.

Anthony Hui, who helped finance and organize the June 25 Toronto match, told 24 hours on Wednesday that Adlani owes $85,000 in expenses. Hui traveled to Vancouver last weekend in a bid to resolve the debt and was holding out for payment at 24 hours' press time last night.

"This is simply a request to kindly pay the bill," Hui said. "I am faced with some serious loss of face here in Ontario."

Adlani said revenue is being held in trust by a lawyer.

"I am busy doing my event, so I don't have time to take care of that," Adlani said.

UNICEF Canada spokesman Chris Tidey said Adlani agreed to remit two per cent of gate proceeds to the charity after the tour.


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