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Blatter in denial over damage to Fifa's reputation

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David Bond | 13:20 UK time, Wednesday, 20 April 2011

To read Sepp Blatter's four page re-election manifesto, you would think Fifa has never been in better shape.

Listing his achievements since becoming president of world football's governing body in 1998, Blatter talks up the great sums of money Fifa has invested in football development (£1.02bn since 1999) and the even greater chunks of cash Fifa earns from television and marketing rights (over £2.45bn in the last four year cycle from 2007 to 2010).

He also talks of three successful World Cups, greater professionalism and social responsibility.

At a time of global instability and uncertainty, Blatter argues, there is no need for change. "We do not need revolution... but continuous evolution," he writes in his letter to each of the 208 member countries which will decide the election contest against Mohamed Bin Hammam at the Fifa congress on 1 June.

Blatter's six key election pledges for the next four-year term include promises to hand out another £612m for football development projects with the possibility of bonus payments if Brazil 2014 is a success, to tackle corruption and match fixing and to strengthen the "universality of football".


Sepp Blatter has outlined his re-election plan

But nowhere is there any commitment to clean up Fifa or to make the organisation more transparent after the latest series of corruption allegations levelled at the organisation.

The only passing reference is contained in Blatter's pledge on zero tolerance.

He writes: "The existing judicial bodies will continue to exercise their corrective function and by doing so will maintain the integrity of Fifa while further improving its reputation at all levels."

Even if it would be hard for Blatter to concede that some members of his executive committee and congress are corrupt, this line shows he is in complete denial about the image problem Fifa faces under his leadership.

In a nutshell Blatter is saying: Fifa isn't broke, so why try and fix it?

So, it is worth therefore, reminding everyone that two members of his own executive - Reynald Temarii and Amos Adamu - were given bans by Fifa's ethics committee after the Sunday Times newspaper alleged they asked for payments for football projects in return for their vote in the World Cup 2018 and 2022 bidding contest last December.

The head of North American, Central American and Caribbean football, Jack Warner, continues to face scrutiny over his conduct. Just last week The Times ran a story claiming he asked the England 2018 campaign for financial support for an educational project in Trinidad in return for his support - a claim Warner denies.

Meanwhile another senior football figure, the African confederation president Issa Hayatou is still under investigation by the International Olympic Committee, of which he is also a member. That inquiry relates to claims made by BBC's Panorama that Hayatou received kickbacks from Fifa's bankrupt marketing partner ISL back at the start of the last decade.

To Fifa's credit, its ethics committee did act on the allegations against Temarii and Adamu, in the Sunday Times. But Blatter's distaste for the media was all too evident and, crucially, was expressed to his fellow executives on the eve of the World Cup vote last December.

And even if Fifa isn't corrupt, many of these reputational and image problems stem from the secretive way a small group of Fifa executives take the decision on who hosts the World Cup every four years. But again nowhere in Blatter's letter today is there mention of the need for greater transparency.

In fairness, Mohamed Bin Hammam might be billing himself as the force of change, but there is hardly anything to give us greater comfort in his manifesto, launched last month.

He says he will increase the size of the executive committee, renaming it the Fifa Board, from 24 to 41. That could make Fifa's key decisions more democratic but critics argue it would just mean more people are susceptible to corruption.

He has also talked of a transparency committee to monitor handouts to national football associations - but at the same time he, like Blatter, is promising to vastly increase the sums of money they receive.

In interviews Bin Hammam has gone further, agreeing with calls for an open World Cup voting process and even suggesting he would support a move for goal line technology. But he insists, like Blatter, that Fifa is not corrupt.

The next month will see a step up in the rhetoric as these two men fly around the world trying to secure votes. Although Blatter is the favourite it is going to be a keenly contested race and one that  we now know will be fought on two opposing ideologies, one for stability and the status quo, the other for change.

But neither have yet shown they are prepared to really tackle the biggest question Fifa faces - over its reputation.

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

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  • Comment number 3.

    It is time for Blatter to go although I fear he has oiled to political cogs in FIFA so well in his favour he will win another term. I like the idea of increasing he amount of members, tha has to help. It needs to be made more like the Olympic committee that has far more members. We have written an article a couple of weeks ago setting out our support for Bin Hammam. Take a look if you fancy.

    http://goodfeetforabigman.com/2011/04/19/is-bin-hammam-set-to-replace-sepp-blatter-as-fifa-president-let%e2%80%99s-hope-so/

  • Comment number 4.

    Mohamed Bin Hammam was the force behind the Qatar WC bid. Make of that what you will but I don't trust him one bit more then Blatter.

    Europe has to stick with Blatter for another 4 years and then get Platini into office.

  • Comment number 5.

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  • Comment number 6.

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  • Comment number 7.

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  • Comment number 8.

    Remember Lampards goal-that-wasnt-a-goal at WC 2010? Enough said. Blatter has to go.

  • Comment number 9.

    oh dry up blatter you great prune

  • Comment number 10.

    I'm afraid this is all irrelevant. It is already well known that Blatter has been grooming Platini for the role as his replacement. Fifa and uefa stink, they do not answer to anybody and it is all about jobs for the boys and lining their own pockets. I'd like to know what they really do all day. It's not for the better of football though.

  • Comment number 11.

    Another "intelligent" article from David Bond.

  • Comment number 12.

    Bye bye Sepp. Make sure your Swiss Bank account is full to bursting before you leave.

  • Comment number 13.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 14.

    Out with the old men at FIFA, in with the younger men who know the modern game!

    I am not against old men in general, especially not in football, they have vision. This vision does not just apply on the field but also off it in terms of how football should be organised.

    However Mr Blatter is a perfect example of a man power crazy who seems to be doing nothing but damage to the game and the way it is percieved around the world.

    Evolution Sepp? ... I don't think so.

  • Comment number 15.

    Cant see this other guy, Bin Hammam ousting Blatter, but would love to see someone else take control. Maybe someone like Charlton or Hurst.
    Considering Platini is a football man he doesnt seem to have football's best interest at heart. Would love to see the back of both these characters.

    Whoever does win needs to trial goalline technology seriously. Too many other sports our leaving football behind, Rugby, Cricket, even Tennis! We know a replay takes a matter of seconds so whats the excuse now?!

  • Comment number 16.

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  • Comment number 17.

    Blatter can bleat about his "achievements" all he wants. The most damning evidence of his regime lies on the pitch. The game has become a boring cheaters paradise, with FIFA doing nothing to truly address the situation. There are very few games played today where cheating does not have a major impact. Personally, there is not a game I would pay to go watch, even Barca-Real. Quite often WHEN a game is on TV (no Sky), I'll find myself switching channels, as play is so poor.

  • Comment number 18.

    Blatters argument of it isnt broke dont fix it is shameful . Yes steps have been made , football is getting more real world , but it stumbles along . What other global bussiness would behave in the manner that FIFA does?Does FIFA considers it higher than any legal and judicial system in the world ? If an association is following thier own goverment guidelines on racial equality and FIFA deem this interference they suspend them , example Bosnia-Herzegovina . Yet when a poster appaers at a ground depicting a player and bananas , the FA involved call it not racist and get rewarded by being handed a world cup on a plate eg Peter Odemwingie and the Russian FA . Then the hopping and bopping about a winter/spring /summer world cup it makes Dick Dastardly look like he works for NASA .

    The structure of FIFA needs to change , Australia arent in Asia , Israel arent in Europe and profit isnt before people . Their should be a much more standard base of person in FIFA , ex-players managers and chairmen who should retire at 65 , letting the younger people come through keeping the ideas fresh and relevent { ask anyone under 40 about using camera refereeing for goals and serious fouls / penalty calls , for elite level comptetion } . I am sure there are some people who might find this ageist , I do apologise but FIFA needs new dynamics and energy . A fixed maximum term eight years? two world cups, for presidents . This should then cascade down the other associations bring a refreshed here we are now approach . It might work to weed out the wicked , show proper talent behind the game as well as in the game and help the game develope .

  • Comment number 19.

    Hmmm bit confused, as he says:

    "At a time of global instability and uncertainty, Blatter argues, there is no need for change. 'We do not need revolution... but continuous evolution',"

    But evolution is a form of change, change for the better! As in, a new FIFA president.

  • Comment number 20.

  • Comment number 21.

    FIFA is rotten to the core.The conman's subterfuge doesn't deserve the time of day. Absolutely zero substance.

  • Comment number 22.

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  • Comment number 23.

    FIFA is doing a rubbish job overall because the refereeing system in place is complete anarchy. We need a complete overhaul of the current system and drag football into the 21st century by using technology.

    I would make the following changes:

    1) 3 video referees: 1 in charge of offside decisions , 1 in charge of key refereeing decisions such as fouls for goals, penalty incidents and 1 in charge of disciplinary matters ie red card offences and diving

    2) Any off the ball red card offence and diving incidents (possibly also other yellow card offences) would be alerted to the main referee who could take retrospective action without stopping the game at the time of the offence.

    3) a stop watch would be used in the same way as Rugby league and the length of the game reduced to 35mins per half (or whatever is the statistical average the ball is currently in play).

    4) scrap bookings for timewasting as there would no longer be relevant.

    5) dont stop the game for offside unless the linesman is 100% sure. Otherwise continue. If a goal is scored the "offsides" video ref will verify its legality

    All these changes would drastically improve the conduct of the players who no longer would dive around as it wouldnt be benefitical when punished each time with yellow card offences - likewise with sneaky red card offences.

    It would also be achieved without little disruption as the game would continue while these video refs monitored incidents.

    Most importantly, we would finally have a system whereby the real winner wins the games 99% of the time. Currently every champ league season is ruined by wrong decisions and also premier league where Man U get an unfair advantage consistently each season - this season probably being the worst. I calculate at least 16 extra pts due to refereeing even before taking account of red card offences they got away with.

  • Comment number 24.

    David, to quote your opening comment... "To read Sepp Blatter's four page re-election manifesto, you would think Fifa has never been in better shape"..... well of course, from Sepp Blatter's perspective 'eveything in the garden of International Football is tickty-boo' ... why do you find this so surprising?

    Sepp Blatter has achieved everything the 'FIFA club' members wanted him to achieve, he is their 'patron Saint' writ large! It is only the foolish, who believe that FIFA should be concerned with what the average football fan/'grassroots' clubs want. This is an international 'money making' club, that protects those on the inside, uses its influence to spread the 'interests of football' (not an 'interest in football') around the globe... and to be honest it has been phenomenally successful ... a times a bit (perhaps) underhanded, unscrupulous, 'grubby-deals/contracts' etc, so what... it has been self serving and untouchable, by any Government or other major agency, it has been impervious to international politics (by and large) and has flown in the face of received wisdom on everything from deciding who should host future World Cups, through to a refusal to embrace new technology, even for something as simple as deciding whether a ball has crossed a line or not!

    Sepp has 'set his face like flint' against all who would criticise him, internally and externally, politically and socially; he has even taken on the almighty 'Gay Community Rights Brigade' (and has appeared to win that one as well!). In short, Sepp Blatter has been a perfect example of how to run a major organisation exactly the way your members want you to do... who will bet against his continuing in office?

  • Comment number 25.

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  • Comment number 26.

    Blatter is not gifted with a vision for football. He is sexist towards women (well documented) and has only his own interests at heart. For football as a whole (mens and womens) he needs to go and Platini is not the answer. Platini will again have his own interests and agenda and our nation will suffer for it. Wait and see.

  • Comment number 27.

    why was my comment removed, I used the word all 'alleged'??

  • Comment number 28.

    #23 colmkav

    I like the overall points you're making, but singling out Man U won't win you any credit.

    I agree that video should be used for certain game changing decisions e.g. did the ball cross the line. I would like it used for red cards but my feeling is that such decisions are often in the eye of the beholder.

    Take last night's match for example. I'm inclined to say that neither Lovenkrands nor Hernandez deserved a penalty. But, could anyone really say for sure? Err on the side of caution I suppose and video might weedle out some but I see issues in that area, even lawsuits though I hope that is over-dramatic of me.

  • Comment number 29.

    Blatter - the new Alan Partridge?

    Alan: I loved that phrase you used, it was very clever -- "revolution not evolution".
    Tony: No, it was the opposite. "Evolution not revolution".
    Alan: Well, whatever. Because that is me. I evolve, but I don't ....... revolve. Or vice-versa. I suppose what you're trying to say is, you don't want another Chris Evans on your hands.
    Tony: No, that is what we want.
    Alan: I'm your man!

  • Comment number 30.

    23. At 17:03pm 20th Apr 2011, colmkav wrote:
    ------------------------------------------------------------

    I agree with most of your points but not all.
    Vid tech really needs to be implemented but with maybe the same idea in tennis and cricket where by the team has 3 challenges per game. For me there are not enough incidents to warrants goal line technology as Blatter wants, this to me shows the guy is severley out of touch.

    I feel that FIFA should also sanction a maximum term for each FIFA president, this will make sure fresh idea's are installed and the right man at the time is in the job.

  • Comment number 31.

    Blatter is delusional if he believes football has progressed since his appointment as FIFA President in 1998. Whilst football finance has improved dramatically (for the elite few), the actual game itself has gone backwards.

    Few matches excite, with new rules and regulations continually sanitising the game we love - all in the name of increased sponsorship revenues (don’t remove your shirt when scoring / don’t raise your studs / don’t tackle?!

    Grassroots football continues to suffer from corrupt officials and agents who still ran amok, leeching millions of pounds out of the game every year. In Mohamed Bin Man we have a rubbish candidate who has no chance of winning the Presidency. What odds he fails to replace Blatter by a small margin in a sham election?

    And don’t start me on the English FA!

    Blatter should do the honourable thing and resign. He brings the world game into disrepute, and only serves to damage FIFA’s reputation (and world football) further.

  • Comment number 32.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 33.

    28. At 17:13pm 20th Apr 2011, MrBlueBurns wrote:
    #23 colmkav

    I like the overall points you're making, but singling out Man U won't win you any credit.

    I agree that video should be used for certain game changing decisions e.g. did the ball cross the line. I would like it used for red cards but my feeling is that such decisions are often in the eye of the beholder.

    Take last night's match for example. I'm inclined to say that neither Lovenkrands nor Hernandez deserved a penalty. But, could anyone really say for sure? Err on the side of caution I suppose and video might weedle out some but I see issues in that area, even lawsuits though I hope that is over-dramatic of me.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Agree totally, and to me both looked like pens last night but in a certain angle. I would still be in doubt though and like in cricket if there is doubt it can't be given.

    The only worry about technology would be the cost to lower league teams and who foots the bill..FIFA or the club?

  • Comment number 34.

    #30 Reinsabaldhead

    Personally, I think a restriction on the number of challenges, indeed the idea of challenges at all, only goes half way to ensuring the accuracy of refereeing that I think we all want.

    It takes moments to review most decisions and the game can be carried on based on the ref's decision and pulled back if there needs to be a correction.

    In practise, a goal line review takes less time than goal celebrations. We might have a situation where players stand around like spare parts waiting for the big screen to show a replay, but, to get things right, maybe it's a necessary evil.

    Overall though, how many of these happen? Would we, as Englishmen, be quite so high and mighty about this had Lampard's 'goal' been given? I'd like to think we would, but, you never know.

  • Comment number 35.

    At 75 unfortunately for Sepp the only "evolution" he is capable of is from life to death. How this buffoon who has resisted goal line technology for so long and is still in office is beyond me. he will get in again though as it is evident he "knows how to influence people and win friends"

  • Comment number 36.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 37.

    #33 Reinasbaldhead

    To be blunt, if lower league teams can't afford it, they don't have it. It's noble that all officiating should be the same from the World Cup final down to Hackney Marshes but that isn't the way of things nowadays.

    Lower leagues don't have professional refs. Further down the ladder, it's subs that run the line. We've got to be practical.

  • Comment number 38.

    I'm not a big fan of goal line technology has I don't think there are enough incidents to warrant it, even taking into account Lampard's non goal.

    We have to accept mistakes happen by refs but to limit these mistakes. Not limiting the referals would make certain managers (no names) question every little decission and I don't want to see that sort of game.

  • Comment number 39.

    37. At 17:25pm 20th Apr 2011, MrBlueBurns wrote:
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Sorry, I meant lower leagues as in professional leagues only


  • Comment number 40.

    It is encouraging for the world of football that Blatter wants to be re-elected. He has a project in progress. It is his duty to modern society to see his vision on football completed successfully. There are some very important pointers here:

    1. It is always important to leave a chief's position in someone 70-80 years old. His traditional values will ensure that modernisation will never enter football and for all those extremists insisting on technology being introduced in football, there is the convenient excuse, anyway, saying he can't hear what people say.

    2. It is very important for FIFA to make profits over a £billion. Excellent business strategies with regard to ticket price policies will ensure stability in functions essential to ensure that football moves along with the times, where bank balances are concerned. An exciting financial muscle can ensure that FIFA will always be taken seriously when they demand from countries more concessions in order to magically win the right to host the World Cup.

    3. An old brain will always keep a steady balance, taking no extreme action when corruption is identified. Conservatism is a serious requirement in stability when modernisation in procedures could be damaging for the future (please, don't try to find sense here but, yet again, I wanted it to be part of Blatter's speeches and talking nonsense here and there could help him in familiarising himself with these pointers.

    Blatter for his bread and his butter - it helps his blooder.

  • Comment number 41.

    Change is needed at the top of football in order to set an example to associations so they get their act together.

    Cheers david, good blog as ever

  • Comment number 42.

    colmkav: You're so right, Man United every season are helped by refereeing decisions, they don't win titles/cups because they are a better team.

    It's all a conspiracy :rolleyes:

  • Comment number 43.

    Reinsabaldhead - the Lampard "goal" situation doesn't happen very often, but I'd say there is 2-3 goals a month in PL that aren't given when they should be. Not many 2-3 goals in 100 odd matches but if the Lampard "goal" incident were to repeat itself in a world cup final and the team who scored the goal that wasn't awarded the goal went on to lose the game on pens, I think it is obvious you need goal line technology, irrespective how many times it happens

  • Comment number 44.

    I'm not sure anyone can really argue with Blatter's comments on the financial growth in the game (though it does coincide with unprecedented global economic and financial market growth so he got the benefit of that), but his last 2 years have shown how out of touch with the reality of the modern game he is...and maybe also with reality in general. His whole approach to technology has been prehistoric at best, his complete humiliation of Ireland following the France playoff incident, his mockery of England and the non-goal, his comments on homosexuals and the completely farcical handling of the bidding process for the upcoming World Cups....all point to someone who has lost grip on reality...Time to go!

  • Comment number 45.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 46.

    43. At 17:39pm 20th Apr 2011, maa107 wrote:
    Reinsabaldhead - the Lampard "goal" situation doesn't happen very often, but I'd say there is 2-3 goals a month in PL that aren't given when they should be. Not many 2-3 goals in 100 odd matches but if the Lampard "goal" incident were to repeat itself in a world cup final and the team who scored the goal that wasn't awarded the goal went on to lose the game on pens, I think it is obvious you need goal line technology, irrespective how many times it happens
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Blatter has said that he may look at goal line technology only, for me you you may as well do away with that and go all out for a vid ref. The vid ref can pick up on this and other incidents.

  • Comment number 47.

    Hit FIFA where it hurts in their pockets, Bring back the Home Internationals and spend all the cash on home grown/grass roots projects.
    The British FA's will get a lot more votes then!

  • Comment number 48.

    Someone should tell Tony Pulis that Blatter copies his cliches!
    "Evolution and no revolution" is something Tony said, right after the semi final.

    One could easily assume that when Blatter uses Pulis's taglines, it's damaging to Pulis's reputation.

  • Comment number 49.

    48. At 17:57pm 20th Apr 2011, Football_UK wrote:
    Someone should tell Tony Pulis that Blatter copies his cliches!
    "Evolution and no revolution" is something Tony said, right after the semi final.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Haha...perhaps they have the same script writer!!

  • Comment number 50.

    reinasbaldhead - to be honest i'm in favour of video refs for goaline, pen and offside decisions that lead to goal. A panel of 3 people, who sit in the stands, majority decision the final decision on the incident. Sport is a competition, you want to best to win, not those teams who have managers intimidating the refs.

  • Comment number 51.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 52.

    Quite like Blatter myself. Disagree with him on a few issues, especially technology but in general it's good he doesn't have a problem offending the economic superpowers of football in favour of promoting football around the world.

  • Comment number 53.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 54.

    By "promoting", I assume you mean "bribing"?

  • Comment number 55.

    50. At 18:13pm 20th Apr 2011, maa107 wrote:
    reinasbaldhead - to be honest i'm in favour of video refs for goaline, pen and offside decisions that lead to goal. A panel of 3 people, who sit in the stands, majority decision the final decision on the incident. Sport is a competition, you want to best to win, not those teams who have managers intimidating the refs.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Agree 98%...apart from one man for each catergory would be too costly on the lower league teams unless FIFA foot the bill, can't see that though.

  • Comment number 56.

    #29. iaincress

    bravo! :D

  • Comment number 57.

    Unfortunately you won't get the puppet master out until he is ready to step aside ... and that won't be until his lap-dog puppet can be assured of taking over and is free from EUEFA commitments.

  • Comment number 58.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 59.

    Anyone up for starting a petition for Ian Holloway to get Blatter's job?!

  • Comment number 60.

    Never seen so many comments breaking the House Rules... Which probably says everything we need to know about Blatter...

  • Comment number 61.

    House Rules rule when Blatter's battered.

  • Comment number 62.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 63.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 64.

    I think there is no corruption at fifa and everything is marvolous.

  • Comment number 65.

    Is there any reasonbly doubt on these strict forums? Or is everything just removed? Im absolutely amazed of what you cannot say on here at the moment. Yet some comments above are exactly what I said only shorter?

  • Comment number 66.

    I think Fifa's biggest problem at the moment is the way they're managing the World Cup. The last World Cup has been the worst in living memory, most notably due to the poor refereeing. There were more notable officiating mistakes in South Africa than there have been in the last six or seven tournaments combined. Offside goals being allowed, poor sendings off, players using their arms to aid scoring and of course goals being three metres over the line but discounted. Unfortunately, Blatter's legacy will be poor decisions made at crucial moments. Goal-line technology is a must, I don't think any football fan would mind games being slightly longer if it means correct decisions are made.

    Blatter's also going to be remembered for 'making the World Cup more global', however he's done it the wrong way. Instead of delivering hosting privileges to country's with average national teams, he should have made it easier for lesser footballing nations to qualify for the World Cup, perhaps by increasing the number of teams in the final tournament. Brazil 2014 should be a great tournament, like Germany 2006, as it will be held in a country which eats, sleeps and breathes football and the home team will be in it until the final stages of the tournament. That's the main reason why I was disappointed England didn't win the 2018 bid, even though I'm not a follower of the English national team.

  • Comment number 67.

    Been trying to post but keep getting modded.

    Basically those in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. We need to look at our own FA and PRemier League before we criticise others of the same thing.

  • Comment number 68.

    I agree with number 23 - Colmkav on his points. Without going into them, this is an area that FIFA need to change MORE than anything else - the ability to more frequently make the correct decisions on the pitch. Easy to suggest, but like post number 32 Mr Chelsea says, its like Politics - the men at the top don't care for what the majority public want or need.

    The big question is - Who if anyone, would ever really change the system of football as we know it? Are these presidents not like puppets of a wider regime, like the American Government who are run by the military?

  • Comment number 69.

    Blatter's handling of homophobia, sexism, sectarianism, corruption and public relations leaves much to be desired, to put it mildly.

    Unfortunately, money talks, and from a commercial standpoint Blatter has done a good enough job for enough associations to almost certainly win re-election.

  • Comment number 70.

    I am wondering why we have a president of a body such as this at all?
    Why are we not democratic with our views?
    If there is one person "at the top", they could well be Mother Theresa and still mud will be thrown in their direction.
    I feel that those who make the decisions who shape this beautiful game should be a board, not a man/woman.
    I know we have the background set up that way but why do we have one leader? I point to the UK at the moment and our government. Do we have one leader? Most think we do, even though we don't. The mud gets flung far and wide and some sticks.
    I would see a board of 8 candidates that would decide on all matters. There would be one player (current), one manager (current), one poilitician from a recognised global organisiation (to show where football can truly make a difference), one player (retired), one manager (from international level background, not currently coaching), one Youth Coach (international, not coaching currently), one sports journalist (would have to work independantly and not be under any busninesses pay structure, possibly employed by the FIFA itself as a liason with press), one Fan based person (I can't think of anyone or any structure that currently has one, but the fans views should be represented in some fashion, and the final member to be from a country's own FA, drawn yearly on a lottery system to allow all FA's to have an equal chance of having someone on the board. You want to stop corruption, stop people being in positions that can be influenced so easily. 8 years in charge means that many can see a future backing one person, one year postings would lead to constant flux, but that can only be good for a game that is dying a media and fan based death at the moment.
    All pie-in-the-sky and unworkable but there you are, we need it in my view - but that is only my view ;)

  • Comment number 71.

    At least it was only four pages.
    Small mercies...

  • Comment number 72.

    Am I the only person who is in support of Sepp Blatter. He is right, the three World Cups have been successful, problem free and saw some excellent football.
    He dealt with the Italian match fixing scandal very well.
    I think he's just been given lack of credit really. We focused too much on goal line technology which to be fair, we do NOT need and because he said no, we think he's a total idiot.
    He said no to the 39th Premiership game which I thought again, was a great decision.
    Of course he has faults but WHO DOESN'T?! Him against Bin-Hamman will be interesting because he has some good ideas as well but whatever happens, football will always remain beautiful.

  • Comment number 73.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 74.

    the sad thing is all this really matters but no one who is important can vote.

  • Comment number 75.

    Anyone over blatter, literally anyone.

  • Comment number 76.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 77.

    Is there a protective umbrella for Blatter at BBC or am I mistaken?

  • Comment number 78.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 79.

    I watched Blatter giving a press conference about 9 months ago, in which he was asked what he plans to do about the increasing levels of simulation and cheating in todays game? He responded by stating that he doesn't believe this to be a problem within football and that his main area of focus is to stamp out 'Bad tackles'.

    This to me shows just how out of touch this man is, he may have 'provided' 3 successful world cups but it cant be that hard, it's football, it sells itself!

    But as myself and other people have pointed out, does it really matter if someone else takes his place? Will anything really change? The bigwigs of FIFA couldn't care less what average football fans think, as long as they've got their 6 figure salaries and cushty ridiculous job titles then why rock the boat?

  • Comment number 80.

    It's obvious that the lunatics have taken over the asylum. We seem to have fiddled while Rome burned. Our only choice now is to start a new World Organisation comprising the properly established Countries and leave this lot of chancers to stew in their juice.

  • Comment number 81.

    There isn't much wrong with FIFA, it is just this country thinks htere is becuase we didn't get to host the world cup. When are people going to realise that our bid was not the best bid. Look at what FIFA wants when hosting world cups, and you will see that ours wasn't the best. The best thing about ours was that we could probably host a world cup without much notice, but since the world cup isn't until 2018 that didn't really matter much. We don't have the best infrastrucutre around our cities or the best stadiums, but most importantly of all we lack a legacy which FIFA is currently pushing.

    Also our bid orientated around 'we have the best league and the best players play here' which isn't going to make us very popular. And as for allegations of bribes, did we not offer olympic hospitality to voters, only to take it back when they didn't vote for us.


    FIFA does a hell of a lot of good in the world and any major corporation is bound to have a few shady deals somwhere, massive firms hide their debts in smaller subsiduaries etc.

    FIFA could do with more transparency yes, but let's not make out liek that is the most important thing regarding FIFA, it isn't. It just became that when we didn't get the world cup. The most important thing is the devleopment of the game across the world.

  • Comment number 82.

    81 - I wouldn't say it's only England that dont like him, I know the Italians share our view and I'm pretty sure that Bosnia & herzegovina aren't too fond of him either right now.

  • Comment number 83.

    Czechmate #81,
    I can't speak for anyone else, but I for one have had postings about Blatter ,deleted by moderators well before the world cup bid decision was announced. Strangely, I was only trying to quote BBC articles by a BBC journalist, so post #77 may be correct.

  • Comment number 84.

    For transparency we need to look at our own FA.

    Blatter has made at least one visit to England since the failed World Cup bid.

    What was said?
    How did he explain his actions?
    Why was he welcomed?
    Why is anyone from FIFA allowed anywhere near England?
    What has he promised us?
    Why have the FA gone all mute on us?

  • Comment number 85.

    Blatter makes my blood boil. I despise this man. And it's certainly not just England that don't like him. As an Irish man I can confirm that he is not liked at all in Ireland. Blatter talked about fair play while outlining his elections points. The man wouldn't know the first thing about fair play. Apologies for bringing this up again but I would love to ask him why he decided to seed the play offs for the 2010 world cup after previously agreeing before the qualifying ever started that this would not happen. The simple answer is that he wanted to ensure the bigger countries with bigger players such as France and Portugal got to the world cup and countries like Ireland and Bosnia didn't. The man is a dinosaur refusing to entertain the idea of video technology being introduced to the game even though football is crying out for it. So many other sports have introduced it and are better off for it. In my opinion it would be good to see anyone but Blatter in charge of FIFA.

  • Comment number 86.

    Blatter is an old fool in a redundant position. FIFA only exist to serve themselves

  • Comment number 87.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 88.

    @23 colmkav.

    Vaguely making plausable points until the last line when you lost all credibility with a non-sensical United get all the decisions all the time blah blah blah. What a way to completely ruin your own post

  • Comment number 89.

    Switzerland...."the home of neutrality"... and transparent bank accounts......and FIFA

  • Comment number 90.

    #29 - I was going to post something similar myself, can't hear the phrase "evolution not revolution" without cracking up!

    In terms of the article, as head of FIFA you're not going to be able to please everyone but you could certainly do a much better job than Blatter - the man has most definitely outstayed his welcome.

  • Comment number 91.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 92.

    Is David Bond now taking quotes from Alan Partridge?

  • Comment number 93.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 94.

    I think the amount of moderator rejections says it all, i suspect hard language was used about FIFA as they all broke the house rules. Time for Blatter to go, maybe even FIFA and replaced by a new organisation answerable to all Associations...

  • Comment number 95.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 96.

    this how i see football once tech is used.

    go to pub, hi guys......did you see the game? did you see........how can you...........thats was never............oh yeah all these incidents got ironed out due to technology so now there is no talking points. leave it as it is!!

    hooray for humans

  • Comment number 97.

    Meido: you may have a point, but imagine the good sex you will have with the wife once the talking points from football are ironed out....

  • Comment number 98.

    devilsreject......you may also have a point, but i aint getting married. no way. :)

  • Comment number 99.

    Blatter can be trusted only to act in his own best interests, never mind the game. As an alternative to re-election , they should lock him out of the building and reverse every decision he's made if there is any desire to manage the game properly.

    The expression "evolution not revolution" is always put forward as the voice of reason and pragmatism. Sadly it tends to be used by people who would prefer to avoid any change and lack the motivation or courage to get necessary things done. It's an expression geared to appeal to the weak and the scared.

  • Comment number 100.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

 

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