Paul Lambert met Zinedine Zidane years after their Champions League final showdown.

The former Norwich, Aston Villa, Wolves and Stoke manager spent one full season with Borussia Dortmund in 1996/97 - helping them beat Juventus to secure their first and only Champions League title.

The midfielder was named as the best player on the pitch by many of those spectating, mainly due to his expert marking of one of the best creators on the planet in France international Zinedine Zidane.

Lambert has now given his thoughts on his performance, and detailed what happened when they were reunited years later while watching Real Madrid train under Carlo Ancelotti.

Paul Lambert was widely credited with silencing Zinedine Zidane as Dortmund beat Juventus
Paul Lambert was widely credited with silencing Zinedine Zidane as Dortmund beat Juventus

Lambert told Daily Star Sport on behalf of BT Sport: “I think people make a lot more of it than what it is, because when I went to the Bundesliga I played against Thomas Hassler, Stefan Effenberg, Mehmet Scholl and Krasimir Balakov who were great number 10s in their own right.

“Zidane was another one where I knew everything about him before hand, I knew the Juventus team beforehand, and I just had this inner belief that it would take a really good team to beat us at that time.

“I knew the danger of him and how elegant he was with the ball and he can go one way or the other way really easily, that was a big thing to remember.

“One thing I didn’t realise was how tall he was and how big he was. He was one of the best players in the world if not at that time the best player in the world.”

Paul Lambert's Man of the Match display helped Dortmund to Champions League glory in 1997
Paul Lambert's Man of the Match display helped Dortmund to Champions League glory in 1997

Lambert and Zidane came face-to-face years later after both had made the move into management, and they shared memories of the occasion while watching Real Madrid train.

“I’ve met him since then,” Lambert then revealed. Before adding: “I met him over at Real Madrid, I went to watch Real Madrid train when Carlo Ancelotti was a coach there and we got introduced.

“He remembered the game and everything that happened and it was a nice moment.”

Ipswich boss Lambert left Dortmund in the same year as their Champions League triumph to return to Scotland, and he only has fond memories of his short stint in Germany.

Zinedine Zidane has been incredibly successful as both a player and a manager
Zinedine Zidane has been incredibly successful as both a player and a manager

He added: “It was different for a number of reasons. The language and the culture were a change by what a time I had, it was absolutely brilliant.

“I played in a special time for a special club during a special era where Borussia Dortmund were so strong.

“Looking back to that time, without comparing it to the team now, we had incredible players and incredible success with the Champions League.”

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