From here: http://www.eurolondon.com/blog/multilingual-football-managers/ I learn that Zidane can speak 6 languages, including French. But does he speak French with accent from his parent's language?

  • 3
    Everyone speaks with an accent; it's just a question of which one. ;) But if you mean does he speak as though it were his native language or a second language, I'd say first. In this video I don't detect anything strange. He seems to speak naturally and well, with a fluid use of the subjunctive, etc. He grew up in the south of France, after all. Anyhow, the real Francophones around here will be able to place his particular way of speaking on the map more exactly.
    – Luke Sawczak
    May 23 '17 at 1:46
  • @LukeSawczak - Thank you! I was wondering if his French was somehow influenced by the language of his parents. As it can be seen from your answer, it is not.
    – brilliant
    May 23 '17 at 1:53
  • Cool. But probably do wait for a second opinion! I'm not a native speaker and he might have a very subtle accent.
    – Luke Sawczak
    May 23 '17 at 2:13
  • @LukeSawczak - Okay. I'll wait. Thank you.
    – brilliant
    May 23 '17 at 2:14
  • The OP means: does he speak French with a foreign accent.
    – Lambie
    May 23 '17 at 19:29

Zidane speaks with a medium Provençal accent for being born and raised in Marseilles. Certainly a different accent than his parents who were speaking Kabyle at home.

The linked document states he speaks Berber, Algerian/Arabic but while he understands these languages, he doesn't seem to be fluent at all with them:


On the other hand, the page misses to state Zidane is fluent in Spanish.


  • Thank you. Do you think it's really true that he is not fluent in the language of his parents? I find it hard to believe because usually kids pick up their parents' tongue easily, unless, of course, his parents spoke only French to him.
    – brilliant
    May 23 '17 at 6:21
  • The fact he is not fluent in Berber seems very obvious from the first video.
    – jlliagre
    May 23 '17 at 6:25
  • Is Berber his parents' tongue. If yes, then I just don't understand how it can be possible that he is not fluent in his parents' language. Did they speak to him only French at home, then? Does that video say anything about that (sorry, I don't understand French at all).
    – brilliant
    May 23 '17 at 6:44
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    @brilliant I have a close friend whose parents speak Russian. They came to Canada when she was 8 and her sister was 2. My friend speaks Russian & English fluently, but her sister has only pieces of Russian, I'm told, and I've only heard her speak English with her parents, who seem to hold only basic conversations with her. I think their case isn't that uncommon among immigrants who want to equip their children with all the tools of the new country. The kid is allowed to learn and speak English and not the parents' tongue, so she ends up with some passive understanding, but not active.
    – Luke Sawczak
    May 23 '17 at 16:11
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    I know some similar experience with Luke. I known people that did not teach their language to their kids in order to let him/her more integrated among the people. While it's a loss (since it's proven that children can manage various languages at a young age, even if they may be a little time of confusion between languages), it's not uncommon for family in order to no be excluded. Note in some other cases, they may understand the parents langage, but not speak it, or speak it but no read it.
    – Larme
    May 24 '17 at 13:09

Zidane IS French. His accent is a bit Southern-inflected from his growing up in Marseille, a common regional variation.

But 2nd generation immigrants generally never have foreign accents, no matter how strong their parents' accents, pretty much the world over.

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