FIFA president Sepp Blatter has challenged those who accuse him of being corrupt to prove their claims and insists his conscience is clear.
Blatter won a fifth term as president in May, only to announce four days later that he would step aside amid a scandal that saw nine past and present FIFA officials named among 14 people indicted on charges of racketeering conspiracy and corruption.
Reports in the media have also suggested that Blatter is under investigation by United States officials in their probe into corruption at football’s lead governing body.
However, the 79-year-old has denied any suggestions of wrongdoing.
Speaking to German magazine Bunte, Blatter said: “[I have] a clear conscience. Otherwise I could not look you [interviewer] in the eye on this issue.
“Those who accuse me of being corrupt must first prove this. But no one could do this because I am not corrupt. No one could send me to prison because of my job as FIFA president.”
Blatter also dismissed suggestions that he is unable to accept criticism.
“I accept correct and constructiveness criticism,” he added. “This is an instrument to think about things and change them.
“But if someone says that I am corrupt because FIFA is corrupt, I only can shake my head. All people who assert that without arguments should be sent to the prison.”
Elections to replace Blatter will take place at FIFA’s Extraordinary Congress that is expected to take place in early 2016.
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