Blatter embraces change, but is it enough?
Sepp Blatter insists the reforms announced on Friday mark the start of a new era for Fifa.
By even acknowledging the problems of the past, the men who run world football are at least showing small signs of progress.
Maybe it is too soon to judge but it was impossible not to feel underwhelmed by what Blatter announced.
For almost half an hour he talked about task forces and governance committees that would work towards greater transparency and anti-corruption measures. The date for the delivery of these changes? 2013.
The 75-year-old Blatter is in his last term as Fifa president - photo: Getty
In the midst of all the rhetoric there were very few concrete proposals. The most significant announcements were:
- Tougher checks for Fifa executives and senior officials. Blatter described this as screening but exactly what they will be screened for he did not say
- Co-operation with anti-corruption group Transparency International to deliver tougher measures to open up the governing body
- Confirmation of a decision taken at the FIFA congress back in June, to appoint a woman to the Fifa executive committee
- A new governance committee made up of 15 representatives from inside and outside football to oversee the new reform process. Blatter said this will include people from clubs, leagues, referees, women's football but also TV, marketing, politicians and lawyers
- A beefed up ethics committee with stronger investigatory powers
A clear timetable has now been set out and Blatter will be under intense pressure now to make good with these plans two years from now.
But by far the most important announcement was the decision to release the papers relating to the collapse of former marketing partners ISL.
A BBC Panorama investigation by Andrew Jennings last November revealed documents which allegedly showed how three senior executives at Fifa took bribes in return for awarding ISL lucrative World Cup rights.
An inquiry by Swiss prosecutors was dropped when two unknown officials paid back £3.9m to settle the case in 2010. Since then Fifa has repeatedly blocked attempts to make papers relating to the scandal public.
By at last agreeing to open the 42-page file to public scrutiny, Fifa has indicated it is prepared to make a break with the past.
However, the executive committee only agreed to the release of the file. It is now up to lawyers to work out what will be released and when it can actually be made available.
At the same time Fifa has also announced it will hand the document to an independent body who will investigate those officials involved for any wrongdoing.
It is not clear who will be on that independent panel or when it will act but we definitely won't see any movement on this until the next executive committee meeting in mid- December.
There may be genuine legal reasons for all this but somehow Fifa has turned something which should have been a real breakthrough into a move which raises new suspicions about the motives.
Blatter and Fifa genuinely believe the ISL decision and the road map to reform these are a step change for an organisation which has been so resistant to modernisation.
Perhaps they will. But at this stage they are far too vague and go nowhere near far enough.