February 13 – Just days after a FIFA delegation led by secretary general Fatma Samoura, met with Spanish officials to discuss concerns about government interference in the aftermath of veteran powerbroker Angel Villar’s demise, the Spanish football federation (RFEF) announced it is finally holding elections in April to select Villar’s replacement.
The former FIFA and UEFA vice-president was forced to step down in July following corruption charges after running the federation since 1988.
“The board of directors today has agreed to call elections for the presidency of the Royal Spanish Football Federation, which will take place on April 9, 2018. The electoral programme will be published in the next few days,” RFEF said in a statement on its website
Juan Manuel Larrea has led the RFEF on an interim basis since Villar left office after being arrested on suspicion of improper management, misappropriation of funds, corruption and falsifying documents, but has not yet announced if he will stand.
Villar had accused the Spanish government of meddling in the federation’s affairs in a clear attempt to influence FIFA’s thinking. Hence the meeting earlier this month which followed a FIFA missive in December reminding Spain that all member federations must manage their affairs independently.
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