February 17 – FIFA president Gianni Infantino insists he has not asked Russian sports supremo Vitaly Mutko, the chief 2018 World Cup organiser, to resign over the doping scandal that has rocked his country.Mutko, who is seeking a new place on the FIFA council and must first pass an integrity check, has faced questions about his role as head of the Russian organising committee after allegedly being linked to state-sponsored cheating by Russian athletes.
He has vehemently denied any involvement but last month reports suggested Infantino had asked him step down. Asked whether this was the case Infantino answered “No” without further comment.
Speaking to reporters in Qatar, Infantino, switching to the 2022 World Cup, was never going to upset his hosts when asked about preparations, with organisers sparing no effort to be ready on time.
“Work is going ahead at full speed with commitment by the government, the Supreme Committee and the Qatar Football Association,” Infantino said. “It’s not just about building stadiums or infrastructure to the World Cup, but creating a legacy that is being linked to football and that is important.”
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