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Thursday, May 26, 2022

Opinion

FIFA corruption scandal ruins soccer on international scale


Sepp Blatter

Tamor Khan/The Cougar

In light of the recent corruption scandals involving FIFA, comedian Lee Nelson took it upon himself to shower fake money over FIFA’s alleged corrupt president, Sepp Blatter.

Americans typically admire soccer from afar, but as the huge FIFA scandal escalates, feelings of disdain towards the highest level of the “world’s most beautiful game” are increasing.

In May, the U.S. Department of Justice announced a lengthy investigation into FIFA that uncovered decades of bribery totaling over $150 million. Federal racketeering charges were filed against 14 people, including nine current and former FIFA executives.

In a separate case, the Swiss Office of the Attorney General opened its own criminal investigation of FIFA on suspicion of alleged criminal mismanagement and of money laundering that could be linked with the allocation of the 2018 and 2022 Football World Cups.

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world and this level of corruption ruins the game on the international scale.

Sepp Blatter, the FIFA president of 17 years, had the audacity to insist on his innocence despite the daily developments pointing in the contrary.

“Anybody who calls me corrupt because FIFA is corrupt, I can only shake my head,” said Blatter. “Everybody who says something like that should go to jail.”

Ever come home and see a pile of poop in a corner or accidentally step in a wet pee spot?

You know the dog did it. The same dog that frantically awaits your return and greets you upon arrival as if you had been gone for five years, only to give you that apologetic puppy-face.

That is the body language of someone fully aware of their crimes.

That is not how Blatter has responded, however. Instead of complying, he placed blame on people under his rule who carried out his orders. He even arrogantly sought out re-election of the FIFA presidency.

“Such misconduct has no place in football and we will ensure that those who engage in it are put out of the game,” said a pompous Blatter.

What makes further shows that FIFA is a joke is that Blatter won the re-election. He announced his resignation days later, but only because the public backlash was too strong and increasing by the day.

After FIFA was publicly disgraced to the point where he was forced out of office, one would assume he would now show a bit of remorse. However, Blatter admitted no wrongdoing in his resignation speech, merely acknowledging his critics’ charges that he’s not the right leader for FIFA as it tries to reform.

It’s interesting that a dog can acknowledge their wrongdoing without even being confronted, but a man without a shred of credibility can still declare no ill-intent despite the world behind him burning to the ground.

FIFA was corrupt before Blatter, they were corrupt under Blatter, and there is no reason to believe his successor will stray from the path.

An apologetic puppy-dog face might be in order. If they fail to reverse this tidal wave of negative momentum, FIFA will drift further into irrelevancy in America.

Tevin Mills is a broadcast journalism senior and may be reached at [email protected]

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