Argentina’s Tapia takes seat at FIFA’s top table

October 23 – Four years after the death of Julio Grondona, once the second-most powerful man in world football, Argentina has temporarily regained a place at the top table of FIFA.

As anticipated current Argentine Football Federation President Claudio Tapia (pictured) has been nominated by Conmebol to take over the FIFA Council role of Wilmar Valdez after the latter was removed amid ongoing bribery allegations – he had been a council member since 2016. Tapia is one of four Conmebol representatives.

The decision, taken during Conmebol’s session in Chile, came three months after Valdez quit the presidency of the Uruguayan federation 24 hours before he was to stand for re-election following the release of secret audio recordings which allegedly compromised his position.

His exit led FIFA to install a normalisation committee in Uruguay. He was also the interim president of Conmebol for two months after the resignations of Juan Angel Napout following FIFAGate.

Tapia, 51, was elected AFA president in March last year with a mandate until 2021. He succeeded Luis Seguira, who had to step down following allegations of corruption. Tapia presided over Argentina’s disastrous World Cup campaign in a Russia and took the AFA leadership following years of turmoil in Argentinean football. FIFA stepped in with a normalisation committee in 2016.

Tapia will take over the remainder of Valdez’s FIFA Council term pending fresh elections.

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