England 2018 makes Russia bid leader complaint

October 27, 2010

England’s 2018 World Cup bid team has lodged a complaint with Fifa against the head of Russia’s rival campaign over comments he made about London.

Russia 2018 chief executive Alexei Sorokin was quoted as criticising high crime rates and the drinking habits of young people in England’s capital.

Fifa has strict rules prohibiting criticism of rival bids.

Sorokin said he would apologise for any “misunderstanding” but not for the comments he claims were misinterpreted.

It is being reported that England is seeking a formal apology from Sorokin rather than expecting action from the ethics committee ahead of the World Cup vote for the 2018 and 2022 hosts on December 2 vote.

The ethics committee, chaired by former Swiss international Claudio Sulser, is already dealing with allegations of corruption involving two FIFA executive committee members, and collusion involving two bidding nations for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.