The Unusual Suspects

David Beckham trusts the 22 FIFA execs – and here they are!

Beckham – naive?

David Beckham

David Beckham is certainly feeling upbeat about tomorrow’s draw. He said this of the 22 men with England’s World Cup bid in their hands:

“I think that we can trust every one of the members.”

But who are these “members” of whom he speaks. Find out after the jump…

Sepp Blatter

The head honcho since 1998, the word on the street is that he’s voting for the Russians.

Julio Grondona,  Argentina

Apparently known as “the Godfather”, word has it that he’s not a massive England fan. A nod to Cameron and his goons, and everyone would smell a rat.

Issa Hayatou, Cameroon

One of those with angry Panorama fingers pointing at him, barking about taking bribes for World Cup television rights in the 1990s. Even more worryingly, he used to be a PE teacher.

Chung Mong Joon, South Korea

A South Korean businessman/politician – kind of like Alan Sugar – he formed a coalition with a fellow candidate called Roh Moo-hyan when running for the presidency of the National Assembly of South Korea in 2002, and then turned on his running mate at the very last minute. Turncoat.

Jack Warner, Trinidad and Tobago

Somehow, Warner has managed to survive amidst ticket sale scandals, an attempt to have a match cheque made out to him, not the Trinidad and Tobago FA, in 2004, and a war of words with football tough guy, Roy Keane. Not the most trustworthy executive, but that’s not really saying much. He’ll probably vote for England.

Ángel María Villar, Spain

With Spain/Portugal also in the running, Villar is as much use to the England bid as Wagner’s X Factor vocal coach.

Michel Platini, France

According to today’s Daily Mail, Platini isn’t “as anti-English as he made out to be”. This presumably still makes him a tiny bit anti-English?

Geoff Thompson, England

Yes, David, you can probably trust Geoff to vote for England. Yorkshire, salt of the earth, big grumblesome face, blah blah blah…

Michel D’Hooghe, Belgium

Or Dr Michel D’Hooghe to you. He’ll be championing Holland/Belgium’s cause, barring anything really weird happening.

Ricardo Terra Teixeira, Brazil

Another one who suffered under the glare of Panorama’s bitchy sideways glances. Allegations of flogging TV rights for treats ensued. No comment as yet.

Mohammed Bin Hammam, Qatar

The whisper on the grapevine is that Hammam is leaning towards a vote for Spain/Portugal. It would be something of an about-turn if he didn’t.

Senes Erzik, Turkey

Pals with Geoff Thompson. It’s looking good.

Chuck Blazer, United States of America

As absolutely everyone knows, Americans are easily bowled over by English hoity-toitiness. Sit him down in wide-eyed rapture with Prince William, and the vote’s pretty much in the bag. Plus it won’t hurt that Beckham is now an honourary American.

Nicolas Leoz, Paraguay

Also heavily fingered on Panorama the other night, it was claimed that he pocketed $730,000 in bribes. He has so far not bothered to present his side of the story.

Worawi Makudi, Thailand

Part of Hammam’s FIFA lunch posse. Expect Spain/Portugal.

Junji Ogura, Japan

His favourite ever footballer is Bobby Charlton, which is handy, being that Sir Bobby was sent out to Zurich as part of England’s cheerleading party. On the downside, the pair might come to blows over the Carling Cup. Ogura is a West Ham fan.

Marios Lefkaritis, Cyprus

The word on the street is that this is one Cypriot who is definitely fighting the cause for Russia.

Jacques Anouma, Ivory Coast

After the Sunday Times got all investigative journalism on football’s arse, the African representatives reportedly felt more than a little bit pissed off with English people. Hence, Cameron, Wills, Becksie and the gang will have to schmooze Anouma like crazy.

Franz Beckenbauer, Germany

Needs no introduction. Voting for Russia, so they say.

Rafael Salguero, Guatemala

He’s in Warner’s pocket! Great news for England.

Hany Abo Rida, Egypt

One of the new kids on the block, the word from the papers is that he’s all about Spain/Portugal. Save your breath, Becksie.

Vitaly Mutko, Russia

Obviously, Mutko will be spearheading the Russian bid. He has also reportedly slagged off English football for being corrupt. Although he then backtracked.

3 responses so far
  • Dave // December 1, 2010 at 6:28 pm

    How does anyone in FIFA get any work done with so much bullshit surrounding every process? Definitely no reason for people to even fly in to present if the minds are already made up.

  • FootieBoy // December 1, 2010 at 7:52 pm

    Crazy to even want it. It will cost and – for once! – DC had the right idea. Shouldn’t be throwing good money after bad:

    WRAPUP 1 – Soccer – Legislators threat to U.S. World Cup bid as tax funding ruled out

    531 words
    1 December 2010

    THE United States’ bid to host the 2022 World Cup was cast in doubt yesterday when a resolution passed the House of Representatives prohibiting tax payers money being used to underpin the tournament.

    The resolution ruled that no funds should go to “international sporting events”, including the 2022 World Cup, until physical education programmes for children in public schools was fully funded.

    The vote was passed after members were told that it otherwise “would be impossible to significantly reduce the alarming rise in the number of overweight and obese Americans.” Its passage was hailed as a key step in realizing the goals of First Lady Michelle Obama’s vision for reducing childhood obesity.

    The U.S. is one of five countries bidding to host the 2022 soccer tournament. Former President Bill Clinton is leading its delegation to Zurich, where the decision will be made on who will host the 2022 Cup on Thursday.

    FIFA has already raised concern about the lack of government guarantees underpinning the U.S. bid, warning in its technical report assessing the bid’s credibility that it could be a risk.

    The passage of the resolution was hailed by anti-childhood obesity campaigners. “It is time that we prioritize own children’s health over international sporting events like the World Cup which cost taxpayers millions of dollars, benefit few, and divert scarce funding from where it should be spent – on critical health and education priorities,” said Dr. E. Faye Williams of the Healthy Kids Coalition.

    “This legislation will bring awareness to the problem of childhood obesity and the need for physical education programs in public school.”

    The resolution called on Congress to fully fund K-12 physical education in public schools rather than providing federal funding from a prospective 2022 FIFA World Cup and other costly global sporting events.

    It resolved that: “Until K-12 physical education is fully funded, no taxpayer money should be spent in the pursuit of hosting international sports events including the Olympics or the World Cup.” If the U.S. were to be awarded the hosting rights for the World Cup, supporters said, economic studies from past World Cup tournaments suggest that taxpayers would be on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars.

    At present an estimated 20% of children in the United States are considered overweight or obese and it is estimated that by 2015 75% of adults could be overweight and 41% obese. Only 3.8% of elementary schools, 7.9% of middle schools and 2.1% of high schools provide daily physical education or its equivalent and 22% of public schools do not require students to take any physical education at all.

    The resolution is the latest setback in the United States’ attempt to secure the 2022 tournament. The U.S. Soccer Federation is already being sued for $US50 million by ChampionsWorld, a former promoter of professional games in the States.

    The suit could wipe out the federation’s asset base, compromising its ability to host the 2022 Cup. The USSF tried to have the lawsuit dismissed, arguing U.S. legislation on sport, and internal decisions by FIFA, had given it the right to impose the fees on promoters, but a judge in Chicago this week said the case should go ahead.


  • Julia // December 2, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    Brilliant PR move, Becks. Ass-kissing in fine style – the FIFA blokes will lap it all up, as you simply can’t lay it on too thick with them. Sure it’s vomit-inducing, but if it works, well, there ya go.

Leave a comment
  1. View comments in RSS feed