By Andrew Warshaw
July 26 – The career of German football supremo Wolfgang Niersbach (pictured), not so long ago touted as a possible UEFA president in succession to Michel Platini, has been halted firmly in its tracks after he was banned for one year by FIFA’s ethics committee in the first sanction resulting from the investigation into Germany’s 2006 World Cup bid, throwing into question his position on the top tables of both FIFA and UEFA.
July 15 – Under Armour has moved aggressively in China to protect its brand from Uncle Martian, a low-end Chinese copycat of Under Armour, filing suit in the High People’s Court of Fujing Province.
July 11 – Within days of the shock custodial sentence handed down to Lionel Messi and his father even though they won’t in all probability actually go to jail, a Spanish court has dismissed a fraud and corruption case against his Barcelona superstar teammate Neymar – and his father too.
By Andrew Warshaw in Paris
July 8 – A former FIFA ticketing partner says he is suing the organisation for $40 million “for business losses” in a dispute over World Cup packages.
July 8 – Seven people suspected of match-fixing – including players, coaches, agents and club presidents – have been arrested in Brazil.
July 7 – The dismissal of the appeal by Klubi Sportiv Skenderbeu to have their Champions League ban lifted by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) could prove to be a landmark decision in the battle against match-fixing.
By Andrew Warshaw
July 6 – FIFA’s appeals committee has cut the suspension of former secretary general Jerome Valcke (pictured) from 12 years to 10 and reduced Asian football powerbroker Chung Mong-joon’s ban from six years to five, though both moves represent only partial success for the two senior officials who served under the Sepp Blatter regime and were determined to clear their names.
By Andrew Warshaw
July 4 – Speculation that the net could be closing in on FIFA president Gianni Infantino has been intriguingly stepped up following the publication of an explosive leaked memo, seemingly on official FIFA letter-headed paper, that accuses Infantino of a series of ethics violations.
The largest corruption threat to football is the one that its administrators frequently seem most reluctant to face aggressively. Match-fixing cannot be swept under the carpet but the anti-match-fixing fight does need more funding and the acceptance of objective benchmarks to evaluate the independence of the governing bodies in the front line.
July 1 – The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has banned two Thai referees for life for involvement in match-fixing following a meeting of its disciplinary committee.
By Andrew Warshaw and Paul Nicholson
June 29 – After some respite with media attention focussed on events on the field at Euro 2016 in France and the Copa America Centenario in the US, the pressure is back on FIFA president Gianni Infantino following yet more speculation that he is to be investigated by FIFA’s ethics committee over possible conflict of interest.
By Paul Nicholson
June 28 – A ruling last week in the Supreme Court in the US could well send shivers down the spines of football marketing executives and rights holders who haven’t been caught up in the US football corruption investigations, yet.
June 23 – Players in Britain who have been encouraged to invest in tax avoidance schemes are increasingly being caught offside by UK tax collectors. They need to act now before all is lost. By Tessa Lorimer, Withers
June 3 – Barcelona and Argentina superstar Lionel Messi, on trial for alleged tax fraud in Spain, has told a court he had no involvement in the management of his financial affairs.