Acting head of English football ready to make a stand.
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Acting Football Association chairman Roger Burden has withdrawn his application for the permanent post over England’s 2018 World Cup bid failure.
Burden, who was appointed in May, says he can no longer trust Fifa members after England lost out to Russia.
“I recognise that an important part of the role is liaison with Fifa, our global governing body,” said Burden.
“I’m not prepared to deal with people whom I cannot trust and I’ve withdrawn my candidacy,” added the 64-year-old.
England 2018 officials have suggested that as many as six of the 22 Fifa members had promised to vote for England.
But in the end England received just two votes – one of them from Englishman Geoff Thompson – ensuring the bid crashed out in the first round of voting in Zurich on Thursday.
Burden accepted there might have been a backlash over the Sunday Times and BBC Panorama investigations into the world governing body, but said Fifa needed to be more thick-skinned.
“We have a free press in our country and we all have to live with adverse comment from time to time,” he added.
“But there is no doubt that English football benefits from the media coverage that it receives and would have been given great coverage if we had brought the World Cup to England.
“I have no issue with Russia’s winning bid. I am sure they will put on a great World Cup and I have congratulated them.”
But the FA’s acting chairman was mystified as to why England had only secured two votes given the strength of its bid.
“We were equal top of Fifa’s own technical assessment of the four bids,” said Burden. “We were top of an independent assessment of the best commercial bids and our presentation on Thursday was widely acclaimed as the best of the 2018 and 2022 bids.
“Against this background, I am struggling to understand how we only achieved two votes. It is difficult to believe that the voting was an objective process.
“On top of that, Prince William, the Prime Minister and other members of our delegation were promised votes that did not materialise.” (BBC Sport)
Good to see someone attempting to make a stand against the undoubtedly crooked behaviour of FIFA and it’s committee members. It really is time some stood up to the antics of the world’s football governing body and one hopes that FIFA as an organization takes a long hard look at itself in the mirror and decides to then clean up it’s act, a hope that may well be wasted.
Burden, joins the likes of England bid chief Andy Anson and his Australian FA member Ron Walker who have all expressed grave concern at the way Sepp Blatter and his cohorts go about making hugely important decisions.
Many people have suggested that the current practice of only FIFA committee members voting should be scrapped and instead replace this eminently corruptible practice for a simple system of giving a single vote to each and every FIFA member nation, which would at least widen the spectrum and allay fears of collusion and the practice of back handers and bribery.
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