28 May 2015

How ‘bribes’ compare to Fifa spend on improving football

Fifa officials and company executives allegedly took $150m in bribes and kickbacks over 24 years. How does that compare to Fifa’s spending on making football better?

Fifa has spent billions promoting football over the course of its history. Yesterday US prosecutors alleged that Fifa officials and corporate executives had received $150m in bribes and kickbacks in relation to the promotion and marketing of football.

Channel 4 News has put that $150m in context, comparing it to the amount Fifa is going to spend on making football better via development projects next year in its 209 national football associations. The amount? Just $55m.

Or compare the $150m in alleged bribes received by Fifa officials and corporate executives to the $58m planned to be spent on Fifa’s most well funded development project, the Goal programme.

The Goal programme builds football facilities and supports innovative projects to sustain football development.

Fifa earned a total revenue of $2bn in 2014, and paid wages of $89m.

Little more than a quarter of Fifa’s expenditure in next year’s budget ($220m) will go into development funding to improve football. This figure is less than it intends to spend on its own operations and football governance ($285m).

“Undisclosed and illegal payments, kickbacks and bribes became a way of doing business at Fifa,” said FBI diector James Comey.

Fifa President Sepp Blatter said: “Such misconduct has no place in football, and we will ensure that those who engage in it are put out of the game.”