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Volume 6 No. 212

Leagues and Governing Bodies

European football associations suggested that future FIFA presidents "should serve an initial term of eight years and a maximum of 12 years overall," according to Brian Homewood of REUTERS. The 53 member associations of UEFA also called for an age limit of 72 for all elected FIFA officials, "including members of the executive committee." The FIFA president currently serves an unlimited number of four-year terms. Football's governing body is "due to discuss and vote on proposed changes to its statues" at its Congress in Mauritius in May (REUTERS, 1/24). REUTERS' Tom Pilcher reported FIFA President Sepp Blatter has said that the organization is taking concussion "very seriously" after West Ham United's Dan Potts was hospitalized after a collision in the Premier League match against Arsenal on Wednesday. Potts was "briefly knocked out" in the second half following a clash of heads with Arsenal's Bacary Sagna and was given oxygen before being taken straight to hospital (REUTERS, 1/24).

The Korea FA will select its new chairman Monday, with ex-K League Commissioner Chung Mong-gyu and entrepreneur Heo Seung-pyo "considered the top contenders," according to Jung Min-ho of the KOREA TIMES. The other two candidates are former Korea Middle School FA Head Kim Seok-han and ruling Saenuri Party two-term lawmaker Yoon Sang-hyun. However, both have "little football administration experience and support," and their chance of winning "seems slim." The 50-year-old Chung pledged to raise the KFA’s annual budget to 300B won ($280M) at a press conference on Jan. 7. Telecom equipment manufacturer Peopleworks Chair Heo is considered as the "only candidate that could challenge the heavy favorite Chung" (KOREA TIMES, 1/24).

The U.K.'s largest supporters group "is launching a campaign to cap the price of away tickets" at £20 ($31.60), according to the BBC. Rival fans "are being urged to join forces to back the Football Supporters' Federation's Twenty's Plenty drive." The FSF "fears that growing ticket prices will hit attendances and affect the atmosphere at games." FSF Deputy Chair Martin O'Hara said, "Without away fans, the atmosphere at games dies and football loses a large part of what makes it so special" (BBC, 1/24). The MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS reported "through a series of meetings to be held nationwide, the FSF hopes it can get sports fans to speak with one voice on the issue." More than 4,000 supporters "replied to the FSF's 2012 National Fans' Survey in which 92.2% of them said ticket prices were too high." Four out of 10 respondents said that "they were now attending fewer games because of high ticket prices" (MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS, 1/24).

The fallout over Australian Football League player Kurt Tippett's "draft-tampering scandal" continued Thursday when his manager was banned from acting as a player agent for a year, according to the AAP. The AFL Players Association's Agent Accreditation Board suspended Peter Blucher after hearing a submission from Blucher in which he did not contest its findings "but argued his case over the size of the ban." Accreditation Board Chair Ian Prendergast said that Blucher's ban would take "immediate effect" and the six-year veteran of the industry would have to sit a three-and-a-half hour exam and achieve a mark of at least 75% as part of his re-accreditation process (AAP, 1/25).

UK Athletics has unveiled a new brand and will be known as British Athletics. The new name will be on show for the first time at the British Athletics Glasgow Int'l Match at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow on Saturday (ATHLETICS WEEKLY, 1/24). ... The IOC has denied "asking Russia's government to turn clocks back one hour to benefit broadcasters" of the 2014 Sochi Olympics. The IOC said it was only asked for an opinion and any decision is "clearly one for the government" (AP, 1/23). ... Malaysia’s "ability to deliver medals in snooker and billiards" at this year’s Myanmar Southeast Asian Games "will now depend on the recently-appointed ad hoc committee." The committee, spearheaded by Chair Tan Sri Mohamad Noor Abdul Rahim, "has been given the mandate by the Youth and Sports Ministry to put the Malaysian Snooker and Billiards Federation back on track" (THE STAR, 1/24).