Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Platini says he wants to tone down politics at FIFA

24 September 2015, 18:26

Zurich - Michel Platini wants politics to play a lesser role at FIFA if he is elected its next president.

Platini is the front-runner to replace Sepp Blatter in February, and said that with him in command, FIFA would be only about football, not political deal-making.

Also read: Blatter under fresh fire ahead of FIFA meet

"We have to care about the game, not politics," Platini told The Associated Press on Thursday, just a few hours before the start of FIFA's executive committee in Zurich. "With me, there won't be politics. With me, it's about football, not politics."

However, Platini's critics have often accused the Frenchman of putting politics before football, especially when he voted for Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup weeks after meeting with then-France President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Platini acknowledged that he "might have told" American officials that he would vote for the rival United States bid. However, he changed his mind after the November 2010 meeting, hosted by Sarkozy at his official residence in Paris and also attended by senior Qatari officials. Platini said it was not anything prearranged.

"Sarkozy never asked me to vote for Qatar, but I knew what would be good," he said, smiling.

As the FIFA presidential election campaign picks up pace, Platini's former ally Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan has openly criticized "political deal-making" within FIFA. It was an apparent reference to agreements by Asian football leaders to support Platini in the Feb. 26 ballot.

Platini also said one of the goals of the next president is to "restore the image of FIFA" and make sure it's free of corruption going forward.

"A good FIFA is like a good referee, nobody speaks about it," he said.

He said FIFA has done a lot of good to develop the game and to transform football, and stressed the importance of clearing the governing body from corruption so it can continue work to improve the game.

"There are a lot of good people in the executive committee," Platini said. "It's just some that are corrupt. If you do something wrong, you will be taken care of."

He talked about the absence in Zurich this week of some executive members, such as Brazilian federation president Marco Polo Del Nero.

Del Nero left Switzerland suddenly in May after other officials were arrested in dawn raids on FIFA's favorite hotel in Zurich, and has not traveled outside of Brazil to avoid the risk of being arrested as part of the current U.S. and Swiss investigations of corruption implicating soccer officials and FIFA.

"It's not the first time a member doesn't come," Platini said. "Of course, we are in a strange situation at the moment, otherwise there wouldn't be so many journalists here."

- AP


Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...