Amsterdam - FIFA presidential candidate Michael van Praag has withdrawn from next week's election and thrown his weight behind Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, he said on Thursday.
"Michael van Praag decided to withdraw his candidacy to become the next FIFA president and to join forces with presidential candidate Prince Ali Al Hussein," he said in a statement published by his campaign organisers on Thursday.
The Dutch FA president added that he had made the decision after "thorough deliberation and reflection with different involved parties and stakeholders" and would hold a news conference later on Thursday.
Also read: Prince Ali welcomes Van Praag's FIFA bid
Van Praag's announcement has left Jordan's Prince Ali and former Portugal international Luis Figo as the only challengers to incumbent Sepp Blatter.
Blatter, 79, is runaway favourite to secure a fifth mandate at the election in Zurich on May 29, where each of FIFA's 209 member associations holds one vote.
Of Blatter's three challengers, Van Praag was the most outspoken critic of the Swiss administrator.
In March, he told UEFA's Congress that Blatter's opponents had a responsibility to "clean up the mess" and that "beautiful heritage of international football has been tarnished" by allegations of corruption.For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page.