Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: All Claim Victory in Top Uefa Election

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: All Claim Victory in Top Uefa Election

Article excerpt

Byline: By Martyn Ziegler

BOTH candidates in today's elections for the Uefa presidency claim they have secured enough support to win the contest.

Incumbent Lennart Johansson's backers insist 36 of the 52 associations have committed to the 77-year-old Swede.

But those close to challenger Michel Platini (pictured above) claim a majority of the votes have been promised to the 51-year-old Frenchman.

The momentum does appear to have swung towards Platini, however, and Johansson will need to call in some big favours in the last 24 hours before the vote if he is to succeed.

Johansson generally has support among the bigger footballing countries but in this election San Marino's vote carries as much weight as Italy's and there are more small associations than large ones.

The four home nations are among those keeping their vote private rather than risk being seen to back the loser, but it is believed Platini has the edge here as well, with Northern Ireland and Wales backing him and Scotland remaining faithful to Johansson. …

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