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SBD Global/July 23, 2014/International Football

Dyke Says FA Will Not Bid For FIFA Events As Long As Blatter Is In Power

Sepp Blatter’s power over FIFA is like that of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un, according to FA Chair Greg Dyke, who has called on football’s int'l governing body to introduce fixed terms of office for FIFA’s top execs and said the FA will not bid to host FIFA tournaments as long as Blatter remains president. Dyke was being grilled by MPs in a Culture, Media & Sport select committee hearing about a number of issues, including a probe into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding process along with questions about Blatter and the FA’s relationships with FIFA. “If he [Blatter] runs again he will win. I think it is unlikely we [FA] would vote for him,” Dyke said of whether Blatter would be reappointed next year to the presidency post of the FA he has held since '98.

ULTIMATE POWER PLAYER: Dyke revealed he was amazed by the power wielded by Blatter, pointing to a recent FIFA congress event in Sao Paulo which he said “reminded me more like something out of North Korea, only in a sense that it was ‘hail to the leader.’” Dyke: “We have already taken a decision that we will not bid for FIFA tournaments while Mr. Blatter is president because we wouldn’t win.” He added that the FA would concentrate on bidding for UEFA tournaments instead. A root-and-branch review of FIFA’s governance is needed, said Dyke, under a new president, which would include fixed periods of office for top FIFA execs, preventing allegations of corruption at the very top of the sport.

NOT A FAN OF ENGLISH MEDIA: Dyke said Blatter’s antipathy towards England, in light of corruption allegations from the BBC and the Sunday Times, was beyond rationale at times. Dyke said, “He [Blatter] saw what I thought was a perfectly legitimate piece of journalism by the Sunday Times. He saw it as an attack on FIFA. And then he started accusing the Sunday Times of racism. It seemed to me it was nothing to do with racism.” FIFA's 209 football associations will vote on Blatter’s re-election next year. But Dyke said England wielded little power within FIFA, which was partly because of the “openness” of its media, which has been hostile towards Blatter.
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