Deutsche Welle, 10.05.2011
|David Beckham helped promote|
England's 2018 bid
Five months after losing the bid to host the soccer 2018 World Cup, the former head of England's bid committee has said four FIFA executive committee members offered to vote for England to host in exchange for money.
Five months after England fell short of winning the bid to host the 2018 World Cup, the former head of England's Football Association has made allegations that four members of FIFA's executive council offered to vote for England's 2018 bid in exchange for money.
David Triesman, who also was in charge of England's World Cup bid before resigning last year in May, told a British parliamentary committee on Tuesday that he had personally held conversations with four FIFA officials who were seeking bribes for votes.
These members of the FIFA executive committee, the panel that selects the host nation for the World Cup, were Jack Warner of Trinidad & Tobago, Nicolas Leoz of Paraguay, Ricardo Teixeira of Brazil and Worawi Makudi of Thailand.
Warner is the powerful head of the North and Central American CONCACAF soccer federation. He denied the allegations from Triesman.
"I've never asked Triesman nor any other person, Englishman or otherwise, for any money for my vote at any time," Warner told Sky Sports in an interview.
A third of FIFA's executive committee
|England last hosted the Football|
World Cup in 1966
Other members of Britain's Department of Culture, Media and Sport revealed that they knew of two further FIFA executive committee members, Issa Hayatou from Cameroon and Jacques Anouma from Ivory Coast, that had received bribes to vote for Qatar's winning 2022 World Cup bid.
If the allegations are true, it would bring the total number of FIFA officials involved in bribery scandals leading up to the selection of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup hosts to eight.
FIFA previously suspended two executives, Amos Adamu of Nigeria and Reynald Temarii of Tahiti, for offering to sell their votes in a sting operation by the Sunday Times newspaper. This reduced the total number of voting executive committee members to 22 for the host nation decision, which took place in Zurich near FIFA headquarters at the beginning of December.
England received just two votes for its 2018 World Cup bid and was eliminated in the first round of voting. Russia went on to win with 13 votes.
Blatter staying the course to re-election
|Blatter has vowed to fight|
corruption at FIFA
FIFA President Sepp Blatter, who has faced his own charges of corruption in the past, said he was not responsible for the actions of the executive committee, but vowed to look into any claims of wrongdoing that were backed by evidence.
"Zero tolerance is going through FIFA, it is one of the items on the Congress. It is my battle horse. I'm fighting to clear FIFA but only when we have the evidence," he told reporters in Zurich Tuesday.
Triesman has said he will submit evidence of his claims to Blatter.
Blatter is up for re-election at a FIFA congress on June 1 at a time when allegations like the ones from Triesman and those leading up to the host nation voting have left FIFA with a seemingly permanent black eye.
Running against Blatter for the FIFA presidency is Mohamed bin Hammam from Qatar.
Author: Matt Zuvela (Reuters, dpa, AFP)
Editor: Nicole Goebel