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article imageEngland FA demands answers on World Cup fix

By Daryl Hammond     Nov 8, 2015 in Sports
England’s Football Association has demanded clarification from FIFA, following Sepp Blatter’s comments suggesting the vote for the 2018 World Cup had been fixed in favour of Russia.
The suspended FIFA boss remarked in an interview with Russian news agency Tass that he, along with other top members of the organisation had already come to an agreement that the World Cup would go to Eastern Europe.
“In 2010 we had a discussion of the World Cup and then we went to a double decision,” said Blatter. “For the World Cups it was agreed that we go to Russia because it’s never been in Russia, Eastern Europe".
England, along with, Belgium/Netherlands and Spain/Portugal all made a concerted and costly effort to bring the World Cup to their respective countries, which may have been in vain if Blatter’s comments are confirmed to be true.
The FA’s anger stems not only from the loss of the bid, but the £21 million spent on its campaign, of which £2.5m was taxpayers’ money. The bid, which was endorsed by famous faces Prince William and David Beckham, fell at the first hurdle, garnering only two votes.
FA president Greg Dyke has written to Football’s governing body seeking answers in the hope of reclaiming the money spent. An FA spokesman said on the matter that:
“The FA has been reviewing its legal position and, as a result, has written to FIFA asking a series of important questions about the process by which the 2018 World Cup was awarded to Russia.
“The questions are all based on statements made by Mr Blatter in the interviews he gave to the Tass news agency and the Financial Times last week. In the meantime we reserve the FA’s position legally.”
Blatter continued by revealing FIFA also intended to hand the 2022 tournament to the USA, until Michel Platini rallied for support of Qatar.
“For 2022 we go back to America. And so we will have the World Cup in the two biggest political powers.
“And everything was good until the moment when Sarkozy came in a meeting with the crown prince of Qatar, who is now the ruler of Qatar. And at a lunch afterwards with Mr Platini he said it would be good to go to Qatar. And this has changed all pattern.”
The stress of an impending disciplinary hearing, as well as the backlash over his latest comments have taken a toll on his health, with the 78-year-old told by doctors to take time off.
The anger over the corruption among FIFA officials has led to several Bonfire night celebrations where effigies of the Swiss administrator have been set alight.
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