Thursday, May 28, 2015

Fifa Gets a Red Card, and a Blue Summons

For quite some time questions have swarmed around the global football governing body and how they come to some of their decisions regarding the conferment of the World Cup and the sponsorship of other world events. Now it is coming into light that there was much more to the winning bids other than creative presentations. The US justice department said 14 individuals were under investigation worldwide for allegedly accepting bribes and kickbacks estimated at more than $150m over a 24-year period, and arrest have been made. Now the can of worms has been opened the big question is how deep does the rabbit hole go in regards to what they were up to, and how high up the food chain does it reach, perhaps all the way to Sepp Blatter? The allegations thus far have included a pretty serious array of offenses from bribery to money laundering, and who knows what will be uncovered in the upcoming days. Honestly, the way this is going Blatter would do himself a huge favor by stepping down amidst the scandal, go on a long vacation, and come out of the bunker after the s-storm has past. He might be able to salvage his reputation if possible. However in a situation like this Americans love to use the term “institutional control” and although he hasn’t been indicted of anything at this moment the census should be along the lines of “he is either in on the bribes or he was ignorant of the fact that it was right under his nose and so systemic that he would have to be blind to miss it” in either case the world of soccer fans needs to assess if this is someone you want running your favorite sport. The Fifa executives indicted include Rafael Esquivel, Nicolas Leoz, Jeffrey Webb, Jack Warner, Eduardo Li, Eugenio Figueredo and Jose Maria Marin The seven arrested at a five-star hotel in Zurich on Wednesday were: • Jeffrey Webb - head of Concacaf, and Fifa vice-president • Costa Rica's national football chief Eduardo Li • Uruguay's Eugenio Figueredo, president of South American football governing body Conmebol • Venezuelan Football Federation president Rafael Esquivel • Brazil's Jose Maria Marin, a member of Fifa's club committee • Fifa development officer Julio Rocha, from Nicaragua • Costas Takkas, of the UK, an attache to the Concacaf president Also indicted are former Fifa vice-president Jack Warner, Nicolas Leoz, Aaron Davidson, Alejandro Burzaco, Jose Margulies, and Hugo and Mariano Jinkis. Update*** World football’s governing body’s president made his first public appearance since Tuesday as he addressed attendees at the FIFA Congress opening ceremony in Switzerland on Thursday. Blatter spoke after seven senior FIFA figures were arrested yesterday morning on corruption charges at their Zurich hotels. While the 79-year-old conceded the organization has lost the trust of the football public after those dramatic events, he showed no signs of bowing to widespread calls for him to resign and the vote almost assured to re-elect him as president should go off without a hitch on Friday. I gotta’ tell ya, if the US Justice department thought going after Wall St. CEOs was tough, they’ve got nothin’ on this guy. Sepp Blatter more resembles Keyser Söze than a old man pushing 80, as he seems to be protected from on high by the Prince of Darkness and has more friends willing to take a bullet for him than Vito Corleone. Even Vladimir Putin has come out in his defense, of course there are some serious alterior motives afoot with him as Russia seems to be the previous benifactor of committee’s generosity, given for a price, so it make sense to make a case that the prosicutors had an axe to grind. Obviously the phrase “lack of institutional control” isn’t deemed a firable offense in most nations around the world when it comes to electing someone to oversee the most powerful and popular sports organization on the planet. Michel Platini says he tried and failed to persuade Sepp Blatter to quit before Friday's FIFA presidential election, but you don’t get to be the head of the most that powerful organization I just mentioned without being able to stare down an advisory going into a fight and he doesn’t seem to be intimidated.

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