cover photo


good day for FIFA

 Xerta last edited: Wed, 21 Mar 2018 14:34:09 +0100  
Well well well. A good editorial in The Guardian. I am going to love watching this unfold.

The Guardian view on the Fifa arrests: football’s game-changer | Editorial


It was the start of the ugliest day in the history of the beautiful game. The choreography of the arrests brought to mind the climactic baptism scene in The Godfather, except that on this occasion it was the mafia that was on the receiving end. The victims had arrived, as they always do, travelling first-class. As usual they had checked into a grand five-star hotel in a country where their organisation is based but pays little tax. But the arrests of seven Fifa bigwigs in Zurich on Wednesday, and the coordination of a raid on Fifa’s $100m headquarters down the road with a raid on the Miami HQ of international football’s north and central American federation caught everyone off their guard.

Fifa was still not thinking straight when it summoned a press conference a few hours later. “This for Fifa is good,” pronounced the spokesperson Walter De Gregorio, at the same moment as 14 defendants (seven of them, including two Fifa vice-presidents, plucked from their Zurich hotel) were being indicted in New York for what the US attorney-general Loretta Lynch called “corruption that is rampant, systemic and deep-rooted”, involving abuse of trust to acquire “millions of dollars in bribes and kickbacks”. If this was one of Fifa’s good days, the mind boggles at what a bad one might look like.

Fifa’s behaviour on Wednesday was full of such skewed logic. But, not for the first time, Fifa is in denial. Its president Sepp Blatter was said to be focusing on the Fifa congress due on Thursday and Friday, the occasion that had so conveniently gathered his acolytes together so that the police could gather them in and at which Mr Blatter was intending to seek a fifth term. His boss was calm, cooperative and not involved, Mr De Gregorio insisted. But that’s how being in denial works. Wednesday’s international investigative coordination between the US and Switzerland was game-changing. Fifa’s reaction recalls chickens running around after losing their heads: sad and maybe understandable – but utterly hopeless.

Outside the Fifa bubble, there was nothing unexpected about what happened on Wednesday. The only surprise is perhaps that it has taken so long. But, thanks to good investigative journalism, there has been little secret for years about the high-living corruption of the self-perpetuating freemasonry that is Fifa. Two generations of Fifa and other officials have colluded with sports marketing bodies through the systematic payment of bribes and kickbacks. Corruption is, quite simply, what they do. Fifa is an organisation whose members still do not think they did anything worthy of investigation by awarding the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.

Mr Blatter sits atop this steaming mound of graft. He may indeed be calm. But he is finished. Either he goes or Fifa collapses – or perhaps both. As the US authorities put it on Wednesday: “Organised international soccer needs a new start.” That will not happen through another worthless promise of internal Fifa reform. Sponsors and national football associations may need to threaten a boycott, and to mean it. Yet without this, the survival of international football and even the World Cup must surely be open to doubt.
  last edited: Wed, 21 Mar 2018 15:19:13 +0100  
I am particularly looking forward to the downfall of Jack Warner (ex-General Secretary of the Confederation of North and Central America and the Caribbean). I remember about four years ago him pulling the racism card on an investigative journo in the most despicable way.

[paraphrase]"You're only accusing me of corruption because I'm black."[/paraphrase]

An absolute scumbag.
I love football, but I won't do the World Cup

 Xerta last edited: Thu, 22 Mar 2018 11:53:11 +0100  
I love football (of the soccer variety). It has been part of my life for ever. I used to go and watch Bolton Wanderers at Burnden Park with my Grandad when I was young (and therefore alienated myself from the Blackburn Rovers section of my family). I have watched every World Cup since 1970 but no more. It's just got so corrupt and corporate and obscene that I just can't do it any more. I am deeply sad about this.

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@Thomas Willingham A thought on Wiggo/le Tour. Would it be worth him riding just to witness the chaos it'd cause in Team Murdoch?
That was a hard Giro.  Dertie and Purito are going to the Tour...if I were him, I'd be fancying my chances at the Vuelta.

If not the win, a decent Greenedge contract next year.

But he's going to the commonwealth games as part of the track team, so his road aspirations are probably over...hour record attempt coming up?
Or yes, it would be worth him riding for our entertainment, but not so much for him.