10 Jun 2014

Fifa’s Blatter fights for another term as Uefa tells him to go

In Sao Paolo Sepp Blatter is fighting to retain the presidency of Fifa – football’s governing body.  This in the light not just of questions about how Qatar won the right to host the 2022 World Cup, but also why Fifa profits when host nations are unlikely make a profit at all.

Blatter (pictured) has been touring the football confederations, preparing what’s thought to be a bid for another shot at the presidency – only to be told today by members of Uefa that it’s time to go.

Now, the problem is this: Blatter is so closely connected with Fifa that many in football feel he has to leave for justice to be seen to be done.

Others, though, think that in pragmatic terms. It’s such a nest of vipers that any new president will spend five years just cementing his own power base, before any hope of further reform. And however slowly, under Blatter’s watch Fifa has begin to reform. Better the devil you know, in other words.

Will Blatter win another term?  Well, as it stands, it’s 4-1 in his favour. Uefa may oppose him, but a lifetime in football means he has good friends in all the other regional confederations.

Fifa eating itself aside, it’s a race against time to prepare for the World Cup. The transport strike that’s brought Sao Paulo to a halt is temporarily off – but will this city be ready in time? A monorail accident yesterday killed a construction worker – and we all know about this city’s traffic problem.

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