The story of Djibril Cissé is one of stellar performances and loyalty, a significant figure in Ligue 1's history, notably for his time at Auxerre.
During his five-year spell at Auxerre, from 1999 to 2004, he had an impressive run, netting 90 goals in 169 matches. His remarkable performance was not unnoticed as it granted him a position in the French national team.
A Star-studded French National Team
His time with the French national team was quite eventful, and he got to play alongside big names in football, Zinedine Zidane being one of them. Zidane, who was then a player at Real Madrid, saw potential in Cissé and made known his desire for Cissé to become a part of the club in Spain.
Cissé’s Autobiography: Story of a Loyalty
In his autobiography, Cissé gives an account of his first conversation with Zidane on the matter. He recalls how Zidane mentioned Real Madrid's interest in him.
- Zidane revealed the interest from Real Madrid.
- Cissé declined the offer, giving his commitment to Liverpool as the reason.
- Even today, Cissé has no regrets over his decision, citing doubts about his chances of being a first-team player at Madrid.
Cissé’s Victory with Liverpool
His loyalty to Liverpool was conspicuously rewarded as he clinched the 2005 Champions League with the team, a testament to his decision to join Liverpool instead of Real Madrid.