Jordan FA Boss Prince Ali Joins Race For Fifa Presidency

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Fifa Vice-President, Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein has declared his intention to run for the presidency of world football’s governing body.

Prince Ali, a member of the Fifa Executive Committee and President of the Jordan Football Association, will challenge incumbent Sepp Blatter and Frenchman Jerome Champagne for the leadership post at the 65th FIFA congress slated for May 29.

“I am seeking the presidency of FIFA because I believe it is time to shift the focus away from administrative controversy and back to sport,” he said in a statement on the official JFA website.

Jordanian FA President and Fifa Vice-President for Asia Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein (L) Declares for Fifa Top Job. Image: Getty.
Jordanian FA President and Fifa Vice-President for Asia Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein (L) Declares for Fifa Top Job. Image: Getty.

“This was not an easy decision. It came after careful consideration and many discussions with respected FIFA colleagues over the last few months.

“The message I heard, over and over, was that it is time for a change. The world’s game deserves a world-class governing body – an International Federation that is a service organisation and a model of ethics, transparency and good governance.”

Swiss football administrator Blatter is running for a fifth term in office having held his position as FIFA President since 1998, when he succeeded Joe Havelange. Champagne is a former FIFA deputy secretary general.

The football governing body has had to contend with controversy in recent month over its decision to award the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.

American lawyer Michael Garcia produced a 430-page report into the bidding for the tournaments, only to resign as FIFA’s ethics investigator after losing his appeal challenging the findings to clear Russia and Qatar to host the World Cups.

Ali was one of a number of FIFA officials to call for the publication of the Garcia Report into allegations of corruption surrounding Russia and Qatar’s bids for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups.

“The headlines should be about football, not about FIFA,” Prince Ali, 39, added.

“FIFA exists to serve a sport which unites billions of people from all over the world, people of differing and divergent political, religious and social affiliations, who come together in their enjoyment of ‘the world’s game.”

The Executive Committee agreed unanimously in December that an “appropriate” form of the Garcia report into World Cup bidding should be published.

Officials at a meeting in Morocco agreed to the proposal without a vote being taken, but will now wait until the Ethics Committee charges against three FIFA ExCo members – Angel Villar Llona of Spain, Belgium’s Michel D’Hooghe and Thailand’s Worawi Makudi – have been sanctioned.

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