Bin Hammam vows to fight on
Mohamed bin Hammam may have lost his appeal against his Fifa lifetime ban but don't expect that to be the end of the story.
The former head of Asian football is determined to clear his name and told me in a text exchange on Thursday night that he was relieved that he would now have "the chance to look for justice".
Earlier and less than half an hour after the announcement from Fifa, his American lawyer Eugene Gulland released a statement confirming Bin Hammam would now take his case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas).
Even if that fails, Bin Hammam has talked about bringing an action in the Swiss courts.
As he said in his quite extraordinary outburst against Petrus Damaseb, the Namibian judge who chaired the ethics committee which banned him back in July: "I am capable financially and otherwise to defend myself for years, if necessary."
Mohamed Bin Hammam is set to launch two separate cases at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Photo: Getty
Bin Hammam says he is the victim of a political stitch-up by his one-time rival for the Fifa presidency Sepp Blatter and his general secretary Jerome Valcke. He has stated repeatedly that there is insufficient evidence to prove he bribed Carribbean football officials at a campaign meeting back in May - even though 16 officials at that meeting are now being investigated by the Fifa ethics committee for taking the money.
He has accused Damaseb and the ethics committee of taking instruction from Valcke and even gone so far as to suggest it is a racially motivated witch-hunt.
Bin Hammam must believe he can bounce straight back to football's top table because his lawyer also announced that he has started a separate legal action at Cas against Fifa for designating Zhang Jilong as his successor as President of the Asian Football Confederation and Vice President of Fifa. He says this contravenes the AFC's own statutes.
And once again Bin Hammam's lawyer has called for Fifa to publish the transcripts from both today's appeal and the initial hearing in July.
Fifa told me this is extremely unlikely to happen until Bin Hammam has exhausted all the legal avenues open to him. In fact the speediest way to deliver on these calls for transparency would be for Bin Hammam to publish the transcripts himself but his lawyer says he won't do that.
What all this shows is that however much Fifa would like Mohamed Bin Hammam to walk away quietly (as Jack Warner did) he has absolutely no intention of doing so.
The big fear for Blatter as he prepares to unveil his plans to reform Fifa at next month's executive committee meeting is that Bin Hammam may deliver on his threat back in July to dish the dirt on the president's own rise to power. So far there has been no sign that this will happen before the legal process is over, but Bin Hammam has nothing to lose.
The two key questions now are: How far is he really prepared to go with this? And with his own credibility so badly damaged can he be sure anyone will still be listening?