Former FIFA president Joao Havelange hospitalised

A Brazilian radio report says former Fifa president Joao Havelange has been hospitalised in Rio de Janeiro.

Radio Band News says the 95-year-old Havelange was admitted to the Samaritano Hospital late Sunday night.

The cause of his hospitalisation is however yet to be ascertained as neither his spokesman nor the hospital was available to comment on the issue.

Late last year, Havelange resigned from the International Olympic Committee citing undisclosed health reasons. The resignation came while he faced a possible suspension for allegedly taking kickbacks from former Fifa marketing partner ISL in the 1990s.

Havelange presided over FIFA from 1974-1998, when he was replaced by current president Sepp Blatter.


Amos Adamu loses bribe appeal

Nigeria’s former FIFA Executive member, Amos Adamu has lost his appeal against a three-year ban over World Cup bid bribes.

Adamu was sanctioned by the football’s world governing body after being accused of seeking bribes in the run-up to the decision on who should host the 2018 and 2022 world cups.

He took his case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which has now considered the sanction was not disproportionate.

CAS said in its ruling: “The CAS panel stressed that it was of crucial importance that top football officials should not only be honest but should evidently and undoubtedly be seen to be honest.

“With respect to the behaviour of Dr Adamu, the CAS panel was comfortably satisfied that he was far from actively and unambiguously refusing the improper offer set forth by the alleged lobbyists.

“In conclusion, the CAS arbitrators considered that the sanction imposed by FIFA was not disproportionate and was even relatively mild given the seriousness of the offence.”

Adamu was filmed by reporters from a British Newspaper, the Sunday times, who posed as lobbyists for a consortium of American companies that wanted to bring the world cup to the United States.

Adamu was found to have asked for 500,000 pounds to build four artificial football pitches – a breach of FIFA rules which led to his original suspension and a fine of 10,000 Swiss francs.

FIFA ranks Nigeria low, Zambia high

A February ranking by the world football governing body, FIFA showed that Nigeria has dropped from 45th which it was in January to 56th position.

FIFA ranks Nigeria low, Zambia high

The ranking also showed that Zambia shot up 28 places, breaking into the top 50 for the first time in eleven years after winning the African Nations Cup on Sunday.

The Chipolopolo (The Copper Bullets) moved into 43rd spot, their highest position since February 2001, after beating Ivory Coast on penalties following a goalless final in Libreville.

However, despite the African Nations Cup title, Côte d’Ivoire moved up to 15th remaining Africa’s highest-positioned team.

Aside from the two finalists, third-placed Mali is ranked 44th, while the host nations of the African Nations Cup, Gabon was ranked 45.

Fellow co-hosts Equatorial Guinea, a team made up largely of Spanish lower league players, leapt from 151st to 110th after surpassing all expectations by reaching the quarter-finals.

Spain stayed top of the rankings while Germany moved up to second and Netherlands dropped to third even though neither side played a game in the last month.

FIFA said the change was “due to the devaluation of matches from previous years.”

Similarly, Brazil dropped to seventh and Portugal moved up to sixth while Argentina dropped out of the top ten, losing their place to Denmark.

Rankings (last month’s positions in brackets)

1. (1) Spain

2. (3) Germany

3. (2) Netherlands

4. (4) Uruguay

5. (5) England

6. (7) Portugal

7. (6) Brazil

8. (9) Italy

9. (8) Croatia

10. (11) Denmark

FIFA donate $250,000 to victims of Egypt disaster

FIFA are to donate $250,000 to the families of the victims of last week’s Egyptian stadium disaster in which 74 people were killed after violence flared at a soccer match in Port Said between al-Masry and Cairo-based Al Ahli.

FIFA donate $250,000 to victims of Egypt disaster

“I stated after the tragedy that this day was a black day for football. I’m still very shocked by what happened. Many of the victims were so young,” FIFA president Sepp Blatter said in a statement.

“They were also a crucial support for their families, who now need help. The football community, including FIFA, must assist its Egyptian brothers and sisters.”

FIFA said the sum would be paid into a charity account opened by Al Ahli.

At least 1,000 people were also injured in the violence when fans invaded the pitch after al-Masry’s victory on February 2. Most of the deaths were among people trampled in the crush of the panicking crowd, while others fell or were thrown from terraces.