As the biographer of Foinavon, it should come as no surprise that I think the late-1960s was the greatest period in the history of sport. And on Thursday, another landmark 50th anniversary falls – that of the 1967 European Cup final, the night of the Lisbon Lions, the match that made household names of Jock Stein and Billy McNeill.
It may now be old news rather than fake news and have been somewhat overshadowed by subsequent events in Bahrain but was the invisible hand of the biggest figure in Asian sport behind the surprise election of a relatively unknown candidate to become Asia’s female representative on the FIFA Council last Monday?
He never had a chance but just getting on to the ballot was enough. Zelkifili Ngoufonja (the candidate known as Zul) was beaten 54 votes to 4 by Egypt FA president Hany Abu Rida for the last position on FIFA’s Council. But if there ever was a victory that showed up the deep flaws of FIFA’s easily corruptible and barely governed election system (and the Confederation of African Football’s in particular) then this was it.
The battle for political control of the Caribbean is entering a crucial phase, and it has nothing to do with football and everything to do with controlling the votes, the agenda and the money. At the centre of the power play is the CONCACAF-driven attempts to remove Caribbean Football Union (CFU) president Gordon Derrick from office and split the CFU membership.
It isn’t every day that a ban by FIFA’s ethics watchdogs is overturned on appeal. Many have tried and failed to clear their names, not least Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini.
Whether we like it or not, Britain is leaving the EU, leading to all manner of ramifications, complications and consequences. But what effect will it have on the country’s place in European football?
African football is in a dilemma. Not the first time, for that. CAF, the Confederation of African Football, is voting tomorrow and the result may well be remarkable.
Insideworldfootball columnist, Osasu Obayiuwana, a member of the now dissolved FIFA Task Force Against Racism and Discrimination, shares his personal experiences and disappointment with FIFA’s half-hearted attempt to address racial and discriminatory issues in football.
Call me old-fashioned but this has simply got to end. A year ago I wrote on this website about the FA Cup, football’s oldest – and greatest – domestic knockout competition being totally disrespected and devalued by top-flight clubs more interested in money than glory.
It’s still early days of course but legitimate questions are starting to be asked about the effect Donald Trump’s US presidency might have on the landscape of world football and specifically two huge issues: the 2026 World Cup and the FifaGate scandal.
Within an hour of our story being published about the discussion of a CFU breakaway from CONCACAF there was talk on Twitter of how many places the Caribbean could have for the World Cup – anything from 1.5 to 3.5, and why not?
If I were FIFA, I think I would be just a little concerned about this week’s 12-year sponsorship deal between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.
The Swiss Prosecutors are investigating the scraps that the US Department of Justice left with them. The DOJ used spooks to identify the bad men at FIFA. They didn’t just do this in the US where super-snitch Blazer was caught in his electric armchair on his way to yet another eatery. They did it throughout Europe, and one would now be permitted to assume also in Russia.
By Andrew Warshaw
All the benefits with no negatives. So proclaimed Gianni Infantino immediately after this week’s seismic decision to expand the World Cup to 48 teams. This is not about politics, he said. This is not about money. This is purely about serving football and redressing the game’s imbalances. Does anyone in their right mind really believe that?
2016 was a remarkable year. In football, it saw an entire generation of administrators dragged before the courts. Sorry: before a US court in Brooklyn. After all, the US is the final authority on matters of the law… The woman who set out to become the “Slayer of FIFA” (her own words), suddenly found herself in a bit of a bind when she met with Bill Clinton on a private jet to discuss grandchildren – absolutely not Bill’s wife’s issues with the DOJ,