Football’s world governing body FIFA on Monday banned the former head of their bid evaluation committee for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups for seven years for “confidentiality” breaches. Harold Mayne-Nicholls, a former Chilean FA president, wrote the report that gave Qatar the worst ranking of the candidates for the 2022 World Cup finals which the wealthy Gulf state went on to win. FIFA’s Ethics Committee adjudicatory chamber banned Mayne-Nicholls, 54, “from taking part in any kind of football-related activity at national and international level for a period of seven years”, a statement said. The world governing body did not give details of the charges against Mayne-Nicholls, but said it was for a breach of a confidentiality rule in FIFA’s code of ethics. Mayne-Nicholls took to Twitter to confirm he would appeal the suspension, and question the decision to announce the ban before he has gone through that process. “Concerning FIFA Ethics Committee ruling before the first instance, I will […]

Russia fought honestly for the right to host the 2018 World Cup and the decision should not be called into question, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday. Swiss judicial authorities are probing the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar as part of a far-reaching corruption scandal that has also raised questions about the 2010 event in South Africa. “We fought in an honest manner (for the tournament) and we won. We do not think the decision should be questioned,” Putin told journalists on the sidelines of an investment forum in Saint Petersburg. “We were ready, and that’s what convinced FIFA. The stadium construction has already started,” he added. The head of FIFA’s auditing and compliance committee Domenico Scala this month warned Russia and Qatar could lose the right to host the the 2018 and 2022 World Cups if evidence is found of corruption in the bidding process. . Putin said that Russia supported the […]

. Under-fire FIFA leader Sepp Blatter on Friday backed greater checks on top FIFA officials and called for greater power for Africa and Asia within the world football body. Blatter, who has agreed to resign amid a mounting corruption storm engulfing the governing body and been accused of blocking greater transparency, took a veiled swipe at Europe’s football powers as he welcomed a move toward greater checks. The 79-year-old president said he welcomed a proposal by Wolfgang Niersbach, president of the German Football Federation, for an independent integrity inspection on the members of all top FIFA committees. “In doing so, Niersbach has broached a subject that has so far been blocked by UEFA of all associations,” Blatter said in his column for FIFA’s The Weekly magazine. “Better late than never,” he commented. Confederations must “acknowledge their responsibility in matters of ethics. Only the Asian confederation has an ethics committee like the one introduced by FIFA. All other continental bodies are […]

A former president of the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), Ricardo Teixeira, denied taking bribes to vote for Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup, calling the allegation “nonsense.” In the latest fallout from the massive corruption scandal shaking FIFA, US magazine World Soccer reported this week that Brazilian authorities had found evidence of payments from a Qatari construction company to a secret bank account held by Teixeira, a former executive committee member at world football’s governing body. The magazine said the Monaco bank account contained 30 million euros. Teixeira, who acknowledges he voted for Qatar’s controversial hosting bid, denied he was paid to do so. “I received nothing, absolutely nothing for that. This business about Qatar is complete nonsense,” he told Brazilian news site Terra. He said he voted for Qatar as part of a deal to get votes for Portugal and Spain’s joint candidacy for the 2018 World Cup. The Iberian countries, traditional allies of South American federation CONMEBOL, […]

Qatar paid the African Football Confederation $1.8 million (1.6 million euros) to present its bid for the 2022 World Cup at a congress, the continent’s top football official told a French magazine. CAF president and FIFA vice president Issa Hayatou said he saw nothing wrong with the payment made before the confederation held a congress in the Angolan capital Luanda in January 2010. Qatar won the right to host the 2022 World Cup later the same year at a controversial FIFA vote now under investigation by Swiss authorities. . Paris-based Jeune Afrique magazine asked Hayatou about the donation from Qatar. “It was $1.8 million, not one million. Paid in two times 900,000 dollars,” the controversial AFC chief replied. “The Qataris gave it to us to be able to show their plan (for the 2022 World Cu) during the congress.” Hayatou insisted he had not expected other candidates, including the United States and Australia, to pay for a similar privilege. “Not […]