Blatter Pledges USD1bn in Development in Re-election Manifesto

April 21, 2011

Sepp Blatter, the current incumbent of the presidency of world soccer’s governing body FIFA, has laid out his manifesto for re-election for a fourth term of office in opposition to Mohamed Bin Hammam, saying that the organisation needs ‘evolution not revolution’.

Asian confederation (AFC) chief Bin Hammam confirmed his candidacy for the role last month and the Qatari will face his Swiss counterpart in the election on 1st June.

Blatter stated: “In these challenging times FIFA needs first of all stability, continuity and reliability“, opposing Bin Hammam’s election pledge based upon major changes to FIFA’s structure.

The 61-year-old Qatari’s manifesto contains proposals for change, including the creation of 17 more executive committee positions on a new 41-strong FIFA board.

Blatter promised to apply ‘zero tolerance and fair play’ throughout the game and added that ‘the biggest enemies of football are corruption, match-fixing and doping’.

Blatter added that under his leadership there had been a 57-fold increase in investment in soccer development projects when comparing the period 2007-2010 with that of 1995-98, prior to his election.

He also made an appeal to the financial interests of the member associations and pointed out that FIFA has grown its cash reserves from zero to US$1.2bn.

Blatter added that there would be another additional financial dividend if the 2014 finals in Brazil prove to be a success and on top of this, he said FIFA would provide $1bn for soccer development over the next four years.

Blatter has pledged to ‘strengthen the universality of football’ and said that the controversial award of the World Cup to Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022 was ‘an important step in this direction’.