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Volume 7 No. 149

International Football

David Gallop's position as Football Federation Australia CEO, along with that of two other senior administrators, is "set to be reviewed following the controversial sacking of Matildas coach Alen Stajcic," according to Dominic Bossi of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. The FFA board will "conduct an in-depth review" into the performance of the organization's senior management, beginning with Gallop, Head of Women's Football Emma Highwood and Head of National Teams Luke Casserly. The board is understood to have expressed its "deep dissatisfaction" with the organization's handling of the saga during a five-hour board meeting in Sydney on Monday night. Convening just hours after Stajcic made his first public appearance since his dismissal, sources suggest the new board "spent a large proportion" of its scheduled meeting discussing how to bring the saga to a resolution and "establishing steps to prevent a similar event ever occurring again." It is understood that questions "will be asked of the responsibility of Gallop," to whom Stajcic reported directly, as well as Casserly's role as head of national teams, which saw him work directly alongside the Matildas coach, players and other staff members. A source said, "Every one of our staff will have a performance review because this has trashed our brand" (SMH, 2/12).

HOLDING FFA ACCOUNTABLE: In Sydney, Ray Gatt reported former Socceroos captain Craig Foster "led the relentless and ultimately successful campaign" to have Bahraini refugee player Hakeem al-Araibi "returned home to Australia and now he is demanding answers over the extraordinary sacking" of Stajcic. Foster has joined "growing calls for an independent inquiry into the axing of Stajcic." In what is "certain to cause serious consternation" in the ranks of FFA, given Foster’s reputation has "now reached almost statesmanlike status," the former Socceroo "also took aim at the game’s leaders," citing "a serious culture problem" within the sport. Foster said, “Someone needs to stand up for the game" (AUSTRALIAN, 2/12).

A fire broke out at the training center used by Brazilian football side Bangu on Monday, sending "at least two players to hospital with smoke inhalation but causing no serious injuries." The accident happened three days after 10 youth players from Brasileiro side Flamengo died. Bangu could "not be reached for comment about the blaze, which TV Globo said may have started in an air conditioning unit" (REUTERS, 2/11).

UEFA announced that in memory of late Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala, who died last week, a "minute's silence will be observed at all Champions League and Europa League games this week" (REUTERS, 2/12).

Former FA of Thailand President Worawi Makudi is "focusing on Thailand’s general election next month rather than a return to football" after he overturned a ban from the sport for unproven forgery (AP, 2/12).