Prince Ali: Sad Day For FIFA
The man challenging Sepp Blatter for the most powerful job in world soccer, Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, said he was saddened by the latest corruption scandal involving the sport's governing body FIFA.
In a brief statement issued by Prince Ali on Wednesday, he said: “Today is a sad day for football”.
His statement follows the news that six high-ranking soccer officials, including two FIFA vice-presidents, had been arrested by Swiss police and detained pending extradition to the United States.
The Swiss Federal Office of Justice said the arrested officials were suspected by U.S. investigators of having received or paid bribes amounting to millions of dollars.
The timing is apparently unpalatable for Blatter, who is being challenged by Prince Ali for the FIFA presidency.
Blatter is hoping to secure a fifth term at the helm despite extensive criticism of his leadership in a period with the sport being dogged by allegations of corruption.
Vowing to clean up the sport if elected, Prince Ali is encouraged to stand against Mr. Blatter by colleagues disillusioned with the Swiss administrator.
The vote will take place during the FIFA Congress on Friday with Blatter widely tipped to win.
It remains to be seen whether Wednesday's latest scandal will have an impact on the ballot and Prince Ali was reluctant to speculate.
"Clearly this is a developing story, the details of which are still emerging," the Jordanian said.
"It would not be appropriate to comment further at this time."
More on politics
SIGN-UP FOR NEWSLETTERS