Blatter should leave now - DFB boss

2015-06-06 18:41
Fifa President Sepp Blatter. Picture: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters

Berlin - FIFA president Sepp Blatter should step aside quickly so that world soccer's governing body can move forward with urgently needed reforms, the head of Germany's football association (DFB) said on Saturday.

In an interview, DFB President Wolfgang Niersbach said it was also essential for FIFA to rigorously clear up the bribery allegations and for a new FIFA leadership to implement sweeping reforms to restore lost credibility.

"We strongly advocate that the announced resignation be done quickly now to clear the path for a fresh start," said Niersbach, the world's largest FA with 6.8 million members.

Blatter announced on Tuesday, days after being re-elected for a fifth term, that he would step down. He is intent on staying in office until an extraordinary congress finds his successor - between December and March.

That delayed departure has drawn strong criticism in Germany. German sport minister Thomas de Maiziere said Blatter's resignation will be worthless if FIFA fails to enact meaningful reforms and end cronyism tarnishing it.

FIFA was plunged into the worst crisis in the organisation's 111-year history on May 27 when Swiss police staged a dawn raid in Zurich and arrested several officials on corruption charges.

"The basis needed to win back the trust that's been lost is to first of all completely clear up everything," said Niersbach. "Towards that goal, a new leadership has to come up with a comprehensive reform package and rigorously implement that."

Niersbach, 64, said he did not know what prompted Blatter to abruptly change his mind and announce his resignation after winning re-election. Germany had opposed his re-election.

"That's a question for Sepp Blatter," he said when asked why Blatter changed his mind. "But it's difficult to understand why a Congress was called and then the resignation was announced four days later."

Niersbach, whose name has been mentioned as a candidate to succeed Blatter, said he is focused on his job in Germany. Elected to the FIFA executive committee in March, he would bring a modern reformist approach while fostering global cooperation.

"I've always said my main focus is on soccer in Germany," he said when asked if he wanted to lead FIFA.

He added Germany, a four-times World Cup winner and a country with comprehensive soccer organisations at all levels, was eager to take a constructive leading role in FIFA's time of troubles.

"There's the principle of 'one country, one vote' in FIFA," he said when asked if Germany should have more weight in FIFA.

"But we in the DFB are taking our responsibility seriously in these difficult times. That's why I agreed to the new role in the Executive Committee (of FIFA) in Zurich," he said.

Niersbach has been critical of both FIFA's handling of a report on corruption for the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup as well as picking Qatar for 2022.

Read more on:    fifa  |  sepp blatter  |  soccer  |  fifa bribery scandal

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Who was the best summer signing in the EPL?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.