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Dyke in favour of scrapping FIFA but doubtful over major reform

Football Association chairman Greg Dyke believes FIFA should be scrapped and a new world football governing body established in its place, although he doubts such a move will ever be possible.

Dyke was giving evidence to the House of Commons’ Media, Sport and Culture Committee on Wednesday in relation to the crisis at FIFA.

Outgoing FIFA president Sepp Blatter and his UEFA counterpart Michel Platini have been suspended from football activity for 90 days as a result of an alleged “disloyal payment” that is being investigated by Swiss prosecutors – casting a shadow over the electoral process to select Blatter’s successor.

Blatter was re-elected as FIFA president in May but subsequently announced his intention to step down amid the furore caused by the arrest of seven current FIFA officials – part of a wide-ranging joint investigation into football corruption by US and Swiss prosecutors.

Dyke does not believe FIFA is fit for purpose but he told MPs that meaningful change could be hard to achieve.

Asked whether FIFA should be scrapped, Dyke said: “Ideally, yes.

“If you could get enough powerful footballing nations together then you could do it but I don’t think you could.

“FIFA is a corrupt organisation – and has been for 40 years.”

Dyke defended the FA’s initial decision to support Platini’s candidacy to replace Blatter – citing his more favourable view towards British football – but explained that this backing was withdrawn when it emerged there was no written contract for the alleged 2011 payment of £1.35million that lies at the heart of both men’s suspension.

“Our view was Mr Platini would be [a} significantly better president than Mr Blatter,” Dyke said.

“[Platini does not have Blatter’s] intense dislike of the England FA and in particular the English media.”

“A verbal contract 10 years later seems to me unrealistic,” he added regarding the payment under suspicion. 

Earlier on Wednesday in an interview with Russian news agency Tass, Blatter suggested there was an agreement in principle to take the 2018 World Cup to Russia before the voting process took place.

He also branded England as “bad losers” following the unsuccessful pitch to host the 2018 tournament and subsequent media criticism of the bidding process for Russia 2018 and Qatar 2022.

“It does look like it’s suggesting it was all fixed anyway,” Dyke said, although he denied there are any plans for England to step in if Russia or Qatar are stripped of their World Cup hosting rights.

“We are much more interested in FIFA reform,” he added.

Wed 28 Oct, 2015
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