Sheik in shake-up for FIFA president as major powerbrokers consider their options

  • Sheik Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa in talks to stand for FIFA presidency
  • Stan Collymore mixed up fact and fiction during talkSPORT commentary
  • The FA jobs cull is going to be more severe than recent estimates of 100 

By Charles Sale for the Daily Mail

Published: 18:34 EST, 13 October 2015 | Updated: 18:50 EST, 13 October 2015

View
comments

Three of the world’s six football confederations are in talks expected to lead to Sheik Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain standing for the FIFA presidency.

UEFA chief Michel Platini had been the hot favourite to succeed Sepp Blatter, but the murky £1.35million payment he received from Blatter for consultancy work completed nine years earlier means the Frenchman’s FIFA ambitions look dead in the water.

Sheik Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain set to stand for the FIFA presidency

Sheik Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain set to stand for the FIFA presidency

This has led two of world football’s major powerbrokers — Sheik Salman, president of the Asian Football Confederation, and Kuwait’s Sheik Ahmad Al-Sabah — to examine their options, having previously supported Platini.

Discussions have taken place at the AFC and also with senior figures in UEFA and South America’s CONMEBOL, who have been ravaged by the FIFA corruption scandal.

UEFA chief Michel Platini (left) had been the hot favourite to succeed Sepp Blatter

UEFA chief Michel Platini (left) had been the hot favourite to succeed Sepp Blatter

Sheik Salman, who has an unblemished record in football, is seen as having the stature to run FIFA.

But his style would be entirely different to Blatter’s. While the Swiss micro-managed every element of the business, Sheik Salman would pick a team and empower them to sort out the FIFA mess.

Not only did radio station talkSport commentate ‘live’ on England’s victory in Lithuania from the comfort of their office near Waterloo, but pundit Stan Collymore implied in one tweet — ‘Fights between rival fans here’ — that he was in the LFF Stadium in Vilnius. A talkSport spokeswoman would not comment on Collymore mixing fact (the fight) with fiction (his location).

Pundit Stan Collymore mixed up fact and fiction during 'live' commentary on England match

Pundit Stan Collymore mixed up fact and fiction during 'live' commentary on England match

BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew is blaming ECB president Giles Clarke for a mix-up that will see the radio commentator miss England’s Test series against Pakistan in the UAE that started on Tuesday.

After Clarke assured Agnew the one-day series would precede the Tests, he booked a horseriding holiday in Argentina as a 50th birthday present for wife Emma. Horse-loving Aggers will be covering equestrianism at next year’s Rio Olympics.

BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew will be absent from England's Test series against Pakistan

BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew will be absent from England's Test series against Pakistan

The Lawn Tennis Association have offered Britain’s 1978 Davis Cup finalists — Buster Mottram, Mark Cox, John Lloyd and David Lloyd — tickets for the 2015 final in Ghent next month, though they would have to pay for their own travel to Belgium and accommodation. Nevertheless, it is a magnanimous gesture as Mottram and David Lloyd have been two of the LTA’s biggest critics.

FA to slash 200 jobs

The FA jobs cull is going to be more severe than recent estimates of 100 personnel leaving.Chief executive Martin Glenn will make a presentation to the FA council on Thursday about the extent of the restructuring in which he will say that around 200 jobs will go.

This follows consultant employment strategists Maxxim, who have been at Wembley for months, identifying 888 roles budgeted within English football’s ruling body, although not all were filled at that time. Maxxim recommended that figure be slashed to 512.

The Football Association Headquarters at Soho Square in London

The Football Association Headquarters at Soho Square in London

However, Glenn has revised the FA workforce numbers up to 600, meaning nearer 200 will be heading for the exit.

The importance of the council meeting means Glenn and FA chairman Greg Dyke will be there rather in Nyon for the UEFA summit to discuss the future of the organisation following the suspension of president Michel Platini.

Glenn will also recommend that FA council meetings are televised in future to ‘dispel a few myths’. However, watching the blazers debate whether they should have dessert during their Wembley suite meal before a match or at half-time isn’t exactly going to attract audience figures to rival The Great British Bake Off.

The FA’s in-house TV channel looks the only realistic outlet if the cameras are let in.

British cycling has been in vogue as the place to recruit those marginal gains gurus, with Matt Parker going to the RFU, Peter Keen helping the LTA and psychologist Steve Peters working with the FA. But England’s woeful performances at the football and rugby World Cups don’t point to cycling skills being automatically transferable.

 

MOST WATCHED SPORT VIDEOS

MOST READ SPORT

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Capitalbay. Capitalbay accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.
What's next
By Shane Walker 10/14/2015 00:50:00