Bribery claims first from FIFA insider


The latest allegations about corruption and bribery levelled at FIFA’s hierarchy are explosive because for the first time they have been made by an insider — a member of the world governing body’s own powerful executive committee.  FIFA’s investigation into presidential candidate Mohamed bin Hammam and CONCACAF chief Jack Warner was sparked by a report from Chuck Blazer, the prominent and outspoken 66-year-old who is a fellow member of the governing body’s executive committee.  Blazer’s intervention is highly significant, coming a week before the FIFA presidential election in Zurich, where delegates from 208 countries will decide whether Sepp Blatter gets a fourth term or Bin Hammam a first.  Warner and Bin Hammam, the head of the Asian Football Confederation, strongly denied any wrongdoing. Bin Hammam said in a statement he still expected to be able to stand in next Wednesday’s election, suggesting the investigation was “little more than a tactic” from his rival, but the claims may have scuppered his hopes of victory. Now, instead of spending the last few days of his campaign concentrating on his bid, the 62-year-old Qatari faces an appearance before FIFA’s Ethics Committee on Sunday.