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Jimmy Conrad is an American soccer defender, who currently plays for the Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer and the United States national team. He is also team captain[…]

It’s all part of the game’s human element, Conrad says, even Zidane’s head-butt.

Question: What kind of play do you think is beyond the pale?

Jimmy Conrad: No, I actually appreciate the human element part of the game, I am glad we are not computerized and glad we don’t have instant replay, I am glad our referees don’t have to go look at the computer to decide if that was in or out, I think the human element provides drama and it provides conversation, so if you are a fan, the referee had a terrible game or he missed a call or that is just part of it, that is this is the talking points that we need, I mean that is where it gets people to the game and get them all fired up and get some invested personally into what is happening on the field, then I think, I think as much as I have been on the wrong end of some calls and if you like I have been wronged in so many ways, you know that is just part of it and I am glad it is that way, I am glad there is some human air involved I think, that is I mean to give a kind of a analogy to another sport, I think that is why I appreciate college basketball more than NBA, because the kids in college I mean they make more mistakes, and so you can almost relate to them more, and so when there is I don’t know, the pros they never miss baskets, you know the NBA guys and it is like they are doing things that most average people can I feel like with soccer, like I touched upon earlier like anybody of any shape or size can play, so they feel like they can do what we can do and they probably could, if they practice and got fit and, well I don’t want to say it is that easy but because that would make me look like I am that special and I am, I am special, so that is, I don’t know, so that is it I am leaving with that.

Question: Even Zidane’s famous head-butt?

Jimmy Conrad: Yeah that was just a bad decision on his part, I feel bad for him because it tarnishes such a great career, it is just has a little dent on a nice shiny career and it is disappointing obviously, you don’t want that to happen, in terms of like kind of the cheap shots, I have been on lot of ends of that too, I have broken my jaw twice and so I have been on the innocent stuff but, it is part of it, they could probably cut out that, but I don’t know how they can police that without having more referees on the field and nobody wants more referees on the field, so you know that is always going to exist. The strongest are going to survive, the people who can deal with that, they'll find success.


Recorded On: 3/24/08