Luis Figo Launches His Manifesto For FIFA Presidency

FIFA PresidencyPortuguese great, Luis Figo, has launched his manifesto as he contests for FIFA presidency.

The former Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan star, says unrest he witnessed at the World Cup in Brazil and the furore surrounding Michael Garcia’s report into allegations of corruption at Fifa led him to stand.

“The Brazil report was one of the things that made me to take this step and announce that I’m here to try to change something that I believe should be done,” he told BBC.

One of the points that stood out in his manifesto is the plan to expand the World Cup format and return money to individual national football associations.

While he did not dispute the possibility of smaller nations backing him for the FIFA presidency because of this proposal, he said, “I am not doing this to win votes. I think my ideas are for the future of the organisation and the future of football.

“The money belongs to the associations and I think FIFA have done a good job but not so efficient like I propose.

“Another idea that I think is possible is regarding the reserves of FIFA right now. I propose in my manifesto that $500million is enough to cover all the running cost of the 4-year cycle.

Figo, who won 127 caps with Portugal, says he is “not worried” about the FIFA election turning “nasty”, adding that he is just focused on his ideas and how they affect his candidacy.

What is important to the 42 year old legend is convincing the associations about where changes are required and that he is the right man to bring the positive change to the global game.

Luís Figo, born November 4, 1972, retired from football on May 31, 2009.

Fifa Vice-President To Challenge Sepp Blatter For Fifa Presidency

B6pdKkUIIAAm2AfFifa vice-president, Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, will challenge incumbent Sepp Blatter for the leadership of the world football’s governing body.

Prince Ali, who is also a member of the Fifa Executive Committee and the head of the Jordan Football Association, will stand against incumbent Sepp Blatter and Frenchman Jerome Champagne for the top job in May this year.

“I am seeking the presidency of Fifa because I believe it is time to shift the focus away from administrative controversy and back to sport,” he said in a statement.

“This was not an easy decision. It came after careful consideration and many discussions with respected Fifa colleagues over the last few months.

“The message I heard, over and over, was that it is time for a change. The world’s game deserves a world-class governing body – an International Federation that is a service organisation and a model of ethics, transparency and good governance.

“The headlines should be about football, not about Fifa,” he said.

Prince Ali, also head of the West Asian Football Federation, was one of a number of officials who called for the publication of ethics investigator, Michael Garcia’s report into allegations of corruption surrounding the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids.

UEFA President, Michel Platini, is said to be “pleased” that Prince Ali has decided to enter the race and will attempt to get the Jordanian as many votes as possible in Europe.

Blatter has held his position as Fifa President since 1998 and will be running for a fifth term at the 65th Fifa congress in Zurich on May 29.

Fifa has suffered a number of damaging corruption allegations during Blatter’s 17-year reign.

Last month, former England captain Gary Lineker described the way Fifa was running world football as “a farce” after the governing body became embroiled in more allegations of World Cup bidding corruption.

The son of the late King Hussein and the late Queen Alia, who died in a helicopter crash in 1977, he attended Sandhurst military academy before joining his country’s armed forces. He is the brother-in-law of leading racehorse owner Sheikh Mohammed, the ruler of Dubai. Prince Ali successfully championed the lifting of Fifa’s ban on the hijab in women’s football.

Michael Garcia: Fifa Investigator Resigns Over World Cup Report

Michael GarciaThe American lawyer who led the investigation into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bid process has resigned from the Fifa ethics committee in protest over the handling of his findings.

The American lawyer cited a “lack of leadership” at the top of football’s world governing body.

Garcia said he lost confidence in the independence of German judge Joachim Eckert, an ethics committee colleague.

The former US attorney resigned a day after the Fifa appeals panel rejected his challenge of Eckert’s summary of the confidential 430-page investigation dossier, the BBC reports.

Mr Garcia said the Eckert summary contained “numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations of the facts and conclusions”.

But the Appeal committee concluded that the Eckert summary could not be appealed and that therefore the Garcia complaint was “not admissable’.

UEFA President Michel Platini said: “We wanted all transparency but this is a new failure for Fifa.”

The head of European football spoke out as Garcia resigned a day after Fifa’s appeals panel rejected his challenge of Eckert’s summary of his report.

“It is the lack of leadership on these issues within Fifa that leads me to conclude that my role in this process is at an end,” said Garcia.

Russia won the right to host the 2018 World Cup, while Qatar was awarded the 2022 tournament

FIFA Lifts 90 Day Ban On Legend, Beckenbauer

Former player and coach Franz Beckenbauer signs a wall of fame at gala marking 50th anniversary of foundation of German Bundesliga soccer league in BerlinWorld football governing body, FIFA, has lifted a 90 day ban from all football-related activities, placed on German football legend, Franz Beckenbauer, for failing to help an investigation of alleged corruption in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup votes, the German’s manager said on Friday.

Beckenbauer, had been banned two weeks ago after refusing to cooperate with an investigation into the award of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

The 68-year-old is a former member of the FIFA executive committee which controversially awarded the World Cup to Qatar in 2010 and had received “repeated requests” to provide information, FIFA said in a statement at the time of the ban.

Beckenbauer has since had a change of heart and offered to provide responses to the questions which he had initially rejected because they were written in what he described as “legalese English” which is complicated legal English.

The legend who won the world cup as a player and coach in 1974 and 1990 respectively, then pledged to answer the questions put to him in German and in writing, and his manager said on June 18 that the FIFA ethics committee received his answers to “all its questions”.

Friday’s statement said Beckenbauer’s management team continued to believe the ban was not justified because he had no obligation to testify to Fifa, but said that with hindsight it would have been better for him to answer the questions earlier.

“I underestimated the matter,” Beckenbauer said in the statement, adding that the main reason was “such voluminous administrative things” are usually dealt with by his management team, but in this case he was unable to involve it fully.

FIFA Secretary General, Jerome Valcke, told reporters that Beckenbauer could now attend the tournament he graced as a player with West Germany.

Beckenbauer has, however, indicated he had no plans to come to Brazil for the tournament.

“As you know Franz is someone we all respect and was an amazing footballer and we would love him to have him here at the World Cup, even more because his national team is playing in the second round,” Valcke told reporters in Rio de Janeiro.

“But it is his decision not to come to Brazil and that’s his decision,” he added.

Beckenbauer had been asked to co-operate with a FIFA ethics investigation led by American lawyer, Michael Garcia, but FIFA said he ignored “repeated requests” to assist the inquiry.

The ban issued at the start of the World Cup in Brazil meant he could not attend any games in an official capacity, embarrassing such a high profile figure in the game.

FIFA told Beckenbauer that a repeat of his actions could lead to further sanctions.

“The deputy chairman warned Mr Beckenbauer that a repetition or continuation of the conduct that led to the imposition of the provisional measure might give rise to further sanctions, including new provisional measures,” FIFA said in a statement.

As a player, Beckenbauer redefined the role of libero or sweeper and captained the West Germany side which won the 1974 World Cup.

He led West Germany to World Cup victory as a coach in 1990 and was head of the local organising committee when Germany hosted the showpiece in 2006.

Beckenbauer is an adviser to Fifa’s football committee and a global ambassador for Bayern Munich.



FIFA Bans Bin Hammam For Life

The world football governing body, FIFA has banned embattled former FIFA presidential candidate, Mohamed bin Hammam from all football related activities for life despite tendering his resignations from all his positions in football.

FIFA in a statement said the life ban is based on the final report by the chairman of the investigatory chamber of the FIFA ethics committee Michael Garcia.

The 63-year-old former Asian soccer chief was first banned by FIFA in July 2011 for alleged bribery during his failed bid to oust Sepp Blatter in the presidential race to head world football governing body.

In July, the life ban was overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport but the Qatari has remained side-lined by continuous suspensions handed out first by the Asian football confederation for financial wrongdoing and then FIFA.