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FIFA President Sepp Blatter Hits Out at “Racist” British Media

sepp blatter FIFA President Sepp Blatter Hits Out at Racist British Media

FIFA President Sepp Blatter launched into an astonishing tirade against the British press today at the Asian Football Confederation’s meeting in São Paulo. With increased scrutiny surrounding Qatar’s successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup, Blatter went on the offensive against those in the British press criticizing the member of the Asian Confederation.

Blatter said

“We have seen what the British press has published,”  “I don’t know what the reasoning is behind this but we must maintain unity.”

Blatter appealed to the delegates asking them to stick together behind its member nation’s successful World Cup bid. This came just a week after FIFA refused to consider new evidence uncovered by The Sunday Times regarding possible bribery related to the Qatar 2022 bid.

Later in the day Blatter attended a similar pre-World Cup gathering of the African Federation. In this meeting the FIFA President was even more direct in these comments raising the allegation of racism.

“Once again there is a sort of storm against Fifa relating to the Qatar World Cup. Sadly there’s a great deal of discrimination and racism and this hurts me. It really makes me sad, anything that smacks of discrimination and racism.”

Blatter’s clever redirect charging racism to African delegates fits into established FIFA political practices. When it comes to dealing with the British, the “anti-colonial/racist” card is one played often in FIFA meetings. To a certain extent this sentiment is also used against the United States, France, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany.

From a political standpoint keeping control of FIFA means rallying African, Asian and Caribbean nations against Britain and maybe even against UEFA. Blatter has decided he will seek another term as FIFA President, and with UEFA’s Michel Platini strongly thought to be running, the anti-colonial sentiment may be strategically stirred up again.

While it is true at times that the British press has been disparaging of potential World Cup and Euro host nations the idea that somehow the reporting on Qatar’s successful bid is driven by racism is easily dismissed.

Still it would be expected that Blatter will continue playing this theme as FIFA’s own history has proven that many in the organization respond to such rhetorical barbs.

Ironically Blatter did not address the continued problems of actual racism around football matches in his comments to either Confederation.

This entry was posted in FIFA, World Cup, World Cup 2022. Bookmark the permalink.

About Kartik Krishnaiyer

A lifelong lover of soccer, the beautiful game, he served from January 2010 until May 2013 as the Director of Communications and Public Relations for the North American Soccer League (NASL). Raised on the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the old NASL, Krishnaiyer previously hosted the American Soccer Show on the Champions Soccer Radio Network, the Major League Soccer Talk podcast and the EPL Talk Podcast. His soccer writing has been featured by several media outlets including The Guardian and The Telegraph. He is the author of the book Blue With Envy about Manchester City FC.
View all posts by Kartik Krishnaiyer →

18 Responses to FIFA President Sepp Blatter Hits Out at “Racist” British Media

  1. Smokey Bacon says:

    Given the constant disrespect directed at anyone who dares challenge Blather, The FA and other top nations should leave FIFA. They would last about 5 minutes without the top footballing nations.

    • Rick says:

      Nations leaving FIFA is the likely outcome in FIFA’s future. Although, it not necessarily all the top nations leaving, it’s what block of them leave and what other nations leave with them? I could see a scenario where let’s say Spain, Brazil, Italy, Uruguay, Argentina, all African nations, most of the Americas, most of Eastern Europe, the Middle East nations, and most Asian nations stick with FIFA. The problem for FIFA then is although you still have a sizable chunk of nations staying put, the countries that choose to leave can still put on tournament that competes with the World Cup. Also, since a lot of top talent would likely remain in the Nations that left on the club level, they would no longer be obligated to release players for international duty. Ponder that one.

  2. Ivan says:

    FIFA is the most corrupt international organization in the history of mankind.

    I don’t really know what the solution would be. Start over? Elect a new president?(because Platini would be so much different, of course)…

    The only reasonable short term solution would be to strip Qatar of hosting the World Cup, re-vote and go from there.

    Don’t get me wrong, those multi-national corporations are dictatorial and disgusting by nature, but I am trying to wrap my head around the recent development of Coca Cola, Adidas, etc. calling for investigation of the bribes associated with the 2022 vote…it must be really that bad…

    As to Blatter, it’s really difficult to express in words how much I despise this man…enough said.

  3. Mufc77 says:

    The fact the world cups 3 biggest sponsors are starting to make noise about the handling of the Bidding process for 2022 is good news. Once Visa, Sony and Adidas start flexing their muscle along with the national leagues and major TV networks its the beginning of the end for the 2012 tournament in Qatar,

  4. jtm371 says:

    play the race card must have hired jackson and sharpton as fifa advisers,very original.fifa makes the mafia look like boy scouts.just take your millions and go away balouter.

    • brn442 says:

      @jtm, I’m not sure what this argument has to do with “Jackson” and “Sharpton.”

      Please take your reactionary nonsense to the Fox news website.

      • Flyvanescence says:

        Wow are you that dumb? Not just Fox News people think of these guys like that.

        And please, leave politics somewhere else.

      • jtm371 says:

        I will try not to offend your sensitive feelings! LOL :) Sure glad Chris is in charge of the site and not Torquemada.

        • Jake says:

          Agreed JTM. As a black person Jessse Jackson and Al Sharpton are a shame to all blacks. They’re closet racists imo.
          The thing about Sepp Blatter that pissed me off the most was when he said if a player were to racially abuse another player the player that receives the abuse should shake the guys hand as if nothing happened.
          He’s a joke and deserves to be out of his presidency.

  5. MaskedRacer says:

    Whenever you are in doubt and whenver your hand is caught in the cookie jar. Play the race card. Straight out of the liberal playbook.

  6. goatslookshifty says:

    He’s diverting the topic from financial corruption to racism. That alone, is despicable.

  7. Jeff says:

    Geez, Blatter better re-check his definition of ‘racist’ because I’m pretty sure none of the criticism about Qatar hosting the World Cup has been about race issues…

  8. t says:

    the african nations would rush to ditch Blatter and the Feeble Incompetent Fraudlent A**holes if the breakaway football group(howabout calling it “The honest, not corrupt world football non senile association” if their first policy was to refuse to release players for nations playing within their leagues to any FIFA member country. Also each country in the honest, not corrupt world football non senile association to file charges against Switzerland for the partnership and lack of fiscal and legal oversight with Feeble Incompetent Fraudlent A**holes

    • t says:

      also spain, italy and the south american associations would be signifcantly disadvantaged and would be very uncomforable if they were refused release of players from leagues within the “The honest, not corrupt world football non senile association”

      TV companies would be prohibited from broadcasting “The honest, not corrupt world football non senile association” league or national games

      Governments could help in cleaning up the game by banning product sales from any FIFA sponsor

    • Flyvanescence says:

      And how long do you expect the new federation to remain honest and incorrupt? 3 weeks (max)?

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