Monday, January 16, 2017

Prince Ali to stand for FIFA presidency

SoccerNews in English Premier League 9 Sep 2015

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Prince Ali bin al-Hussein has confirmed he will stand to replace Sepp Blatter as FIFA president next year, having been unsuccessful in gaining world football’s top job in May.

The former FIFA vice-president and current president of the Jordanian Football Association lost out to Blatter in the elections just over three months ago before the long-serving Swiss announced he was to relinquish his role.

Blatter made the announcement shortly after being re-elected for a fifth term in the aftermath of a corruption crisis that engulfed FIFA.

Prince Ali suggested at the Soccerex convention on Monday that people should “stay tuned” for confirmation of his bid to stand at FIFA’s Extraordinary Congress in February.

And during a speech on Wednesday, he announced his intention to stand again, adding he would not be used as a pawn for others this time around.

“Friends – I stand here in this ancient place in the timeless heart of Amman to once again launch my candidacy for the presidency of FIFA,” he said.

“Let me be clear.  I want to finish what we started. Ten months ago, I was the only person who dared to challenge Mr Blatter for the presidency of FIFA. I ran because I believe that FIFA needs change and I had the courage to fight for change when others were afraid.

“I conceded that election. Not because I was not the best candidate, but because others were using me to make room for themselves. They didn’t have the guts to run but I did. Ever since president Blatter promised his resignation just a few days later, they have been scrambling to secure the job for themselves.

“I didn’t stand for election the first time to make way for others. This election should be about football and not personal ambition.

“We have come too far to walk away now.  I have thought long and hard on this. I believe in the road we started. I believe in the moments I shared with people all over the world, who told me their hopes and dreams.

“I will not be a pawn for others.  I cannot leave the field that I have cleared, only to allow a flawed system to continue.”

It means Prince Ali will join UEFA president Michel Platini in the running – having accused the Frenchman of being Blatter’s “protege” earlier this week.

Former vice-president Chung Mong-joon has also confirmed his intention to stand, while Brazil great Zico, Liberia FA chairman Musa Bility and former Trinidad and Tobago captain David Nakhid are also expected to join the race.

Candidates have until October 26 to gain the required backing from five FIFA members and submit their intention to stand.

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