UEFA calls for presidential polls to be postponed — FIFA crisis

Blatter spoke at the FIFA congress hours before the presidential election in which he is a seeking a fifth term.

The Uefa member associations are due to meet today ahead of the congress.

Gill was to replace Jim Boyce in holding the vice presidency guaranteed for British nations.

Longtime incumbent Sepp Blatter of Switzerland is being challenged by Jordan’s Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein. FIFA said earlier today that it’s cooperating with the investigations and the election will take place as planned. “Instead, they corrupted the world of soccer“.

Meanwhile, David Gill has announced he will stand down from the FIFA Executive Committee if Blatter is re-elected on Friday. “FFA believes that profound change within FIFA is needed”, he said. World football is an enormous international business. Dyke, speaking to BBC radio before Friday’s presidential vote in Zurich, said England would not go it alone but would consider joining a wider European boycott. There were accusations even before the election that Blatter’s associates were buying votes.

The 79-year-old Swiss polled 133 of the possible 209 votes, 60 more than Prince Ali, but short of the two-thirds needed to claim a first round victory.

FIFA is clearly in the sights of law enforcement agencies again, although Blatter has not been accused of wrongdoing in the criminal investigations.

Blatter did have one big ally in Europe – Russia, the site of the next World Cup.

“I like you, I like my job”, Blatter said to cheering voters.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter has chaired an emergency meeting with continental soccer bodies, while staying out of public view himself. If Blatter gets re-elected, then that should be discussed. He is also avoiding appearing in public. “The proceedings will follow their course in line with the FIFA Code of Ethics”.

“This Department of Justice is determined to end these practices to root out corruption and bring wrongdoers to justice”. “I am sure the initiative will now be taken to make a new decision”.

US Attorney General Loretta Lynch said: “The indictment alleges corruption that is rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted both abroad and in the US. They are worthy of the attention”.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius supports the idea of delaying FIFA’s election scheduled for Friday given the current corruption scandal.

FIFA reacted by provisionally suspending the 11 football officials among the 18 people indicted.

Fabius said on France-Inter radio Thursday, “There have been accusations of corruption for years”.

“Sepp Blatter has to go”.

Fifa is to hold a news conference at 1000 BST following the arrests, a spokesman said.

Blatter skipped two meetings of continental soccer organizations on Wednesday.

Nike signed a $100m (£65m) deal with the Brazilian Football Confederation in 1996 and has issued a statement saying it is “concerned by the very serious allegations”.

“The responsibility with regard to football administration is for football administrators but the FA – and we are squarely behind the FA – supports the candidacy of Prince Ali and we are four square behind that”.

Visa said its “disappointment and concern” was “profound” and called on Fifa to take “swift and immediate steps” to rebuild its culture.

“I think the odds are still on him (Blatter) winning but they are nowhere near where they were”.

The United States Attorney General yesterday arrested several high-ranking FIFA officials in Zurich amid claims of money laundering, racketeering and wire fraud over the last 20 years.

[STORY: 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding to be investigated, documents seized]. It has been a dramatic build up to the election, which European delegates wanted to delay.

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