Blatter Has Left FIFA on Verge of Ruin, Warns Scot; GEORGE GRANT Hears David Will Detail a Damning List of Charges against Supremo

Article excerpt

Byline: GEORGE GRANT

SHOCKING new allegations of Sepp Blatter's involvement in corruption and financial mismanagement surfaced yesterday, with the most damaging claims coming from Scotland's FIFA vicepresident David Will.

As the presidential election campaign entered its final 24 hours, Brechin-based lawyer Will, who has been leading an investigation into the finances of football's world governing body, sent a letter to all national associations claiming FIFA has lost [pound]215million over the last four years and is teetering on the verge of bankruptcy.

At today's FIFA extraordinary congress, the former Glebe Park chairman will allege that a report due to be given by Blatter about FIFA's finances - the socalled 'Yellow Book' - is seriously flawed.

There have also been accusations by Blatter's opponents that the president paid ex-Cameroon striker Roger Milla [pound]11,000 to endorse him.

Blatter is standing against Issa Hayatou, the head of the African federation and a compatriot of Milla - hence the value to Blatter of being able to claim the support of the most famous Cameroonian of all.

The allegations came to light at a news conference held by Hayatou and three other FIFA vicepresidents in Seoul.

One of those vicepresidents, the Italian Antonio Matarrese, said: 'It is very clear Blatter has tried to buy votes. It's a truly scandalous way to behave.' Will's findings have caused several senior FIFA members to issue warnings of a looming financial catastrophe.

Lennart Johansson, UEFA president and a FIFA vice-president, said: 'FIFA is in crisis both financially and organisationally.

'The whole integrity and credibility is in bad shape and they need to be restored.

The finances are in a mess and FIFA's president has taken the organisation to the brink of disaster. …