“I did not resign,” Blatter told the party. “I put myself and my office in the hands of the FIFA congress.”
The latter part of Blatter’s statement suggests he wants to seek re-election when FIFA holds a special congress sometime later this year or early in 2016. This is also consistent with a report earlier this month that Blatter was reconsidering his decision to step down and could seek re-election after receiving “messages of support from African and Asian football associations.”
However, according to FIFA, Blatter is not changing his mind and will step down as planned.
In a statement to the Associated Press, FIFA said Blatter’s comments do not contradict the comments he made when he announced his attention to step down.
“We can confirm the quotes in Blick are accurate,” FIFA said in the statement. “However, they are fully in line with the speech of the President on June 2.”
It appears that Blatter is just playing semantics at this point, something he is known for, possibly in an attempt to protect his legacy.
During his surprise press conference on June 2, Blatter never used the word “resign.” Rather, Blatter rather coyly said he “will continue to exercise [his] functions as FIFA President until that election” and that he “shall not be a candidate.”
Still, until a new president of FIFA is elected it would seem that anything is possible especially since Blatter undoubtedly still has the support of the many African and Asian soccer federations that have flourished under his reign. But for now, the plan, at least, is for Blatter to step down sometime in the next nine months.
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