Monday, 20 July 2015

Blatter Tries To Salvage Legacy Amid Scandal



FIFA has teetered on the edge of farce so often in recent years that perhaps it was fitting that a "comedian" (his description, not mine) should derail Sepp Blatter's first press appearance since he announced he would stand down.
Simon Brodkin, who operates under various stage names, has made a career out of pranks and plainly relishes the publicity and the cheap laughs.
But like him or loath him - and not everyone in the press room was impressed with the impact his actions will have on covering FIFA in future – his crude stunt cut through what promised to be a credibility-stretching afternoon.
Mr Blatter's intention on a bizarre afternoon was to set out the terms of his legacy, principally a process of reform.

Given that he has been in charge for 17 years, during which time FIFA's reputation has declined to its current low, he's a late convert.
FIFA rules dictate there must be four months' notice for elections, but Mr Blatter will have spent twice as long in the office he has made his own.
The delay gives him ample time to set the tone and the terms of his departure, to the dismay of his many critics.
He has already had seven weeks to work on the politics and positioning of his final move, and the choreography of the process became clearer today.
By delaying the election until February Blatter has guaranteed at least two more gala occasions on his lengthy lap of honors.
He will preside over the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan in December, and the Ballon D'Or in the second week of January next year, an event that gives him the chance to enjoy the reflected glory of Lionel Messi or Ronaldo (depending on whose turn it is to win this year).

Henry J Williams

Author & Editor

Has laoreet percipitur ad. Vide interesset in mei, no his legimus verterem. Et nostrum imperdiet appellantur usu, mnesarchum referrentur id vim.

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