Sepp Blatter says FIFA can't be fixed by a new president

In the wake of a $US150 million corruption scandal, and a new presidential election still six months off following Sepp Blatter’s shocking resignation, much of the FIFA world has has been quiet.

Dutch news site Volksrant got a rare interview with Blatter, in which he discusses his resignation, lifestyle, and the future of FIFA.

In discussing his eventual replacement, likely to be UEFA president Michael Plattini, Blatter says that a new president can’t make the widespread changes to FIFA that many people called for when they wanted Blatter to resign.

“The new president cannot change FIFA,” Blatter said.

“When I was elected for the first time, in 1998, there were 34 people working at FIFA. Now there are over 400. We have contracts running unto 2028. No newcomer can ever change that. He may replace a few people at FIFA, but it is the same as with a football club. You can replace Ajax’s technical director and coach, but you can’t send all the players home.”

Blatter also said that the corruption arrests of several former members of FIFA’s executive committee relate to problems outside of FIFA, saying, “What they are being accused of has nothing to do with FIFA. FIFA has no influence on these matters, let alone FIFA’s president.”

Where Blatter’s analogy football club-manager analogy falls short is that under new leadership, a club could remove bad players and personnel and change the culture. In the same way, a new FIFA president could work to change the culture and potentially run out some of the corruption.

Blatter wouldn’t reveal what happened behind the scenes leading up to his resignation, but said one day when the investigation is over, he will tell his story.

Read the entire interview here. >

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