AFC schedules Goa Congress as Salman pledges support to on-going reform

May 12 – The Asian Football Confederation have called an Extraordinary Congress to be held in Goa, India, on September 27 to elect its three additional members to the newly established FIFA Council,  including the required female representative.

The decision was taken by the AFC’s executive committee and comes three days before the FIFA deadline for nominations with Council’s first full meeting scheduled for the following month.

The election process will be overseen by FIFA who will also carry out integrity checks on anyone who puts forward their candidacy.

UEFA are also planning a decision in September though no date on elections of candidates has yet been set.

The AFC meeting will coincide with its U-16 Championship, which will be held from September 15 to October 2.

At an AFC lunch in Mexico City, FIFA president Gianni Infantino was welcomed by his election rival Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, president of the AFC, who pledged Asia’s support for his presidency.

Infantino was joined by former Real Madrid star Fernando Hierro and former Croatian International Zvonimir Boban who form part of FIFA’s legends programme.

“The last time that we held an AFC Confederation lunch was in Zurich the day before the FIFA Presidential Election,” said Salman.

“We all know the result and I think that both Gianni and I will agree it was an election which was fought in the spirit of fair play and respect. These are two foundation stones of our great game – fair play and respect.

“It was important that whoever won that they began a crucial process. The process of reform, the revitalisation and rebuilding of FIFA – and I am pleased that our Member Associations took the same view with their support for the need for reform. They recognised need to rebuild faith and confidence in FIFA…

“We share the view that football is the people’s game – a game that belongs to everyone in the world – no matter your beliefs, colour, gender, wealth or ability. We are merely the guardians of this game.

“Our challenge, our duty, is to hand it to the next generation in a better place and in better health than we inherited it.”

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