Fifa president looks to the future

Joseph "Sepp" Blatter, President of FIFAImage via Wikipedia

Sepp Blatter, the Swiss president of world football’s governing body Fifa, has called on “friends of football” to support him in his mission in 2011.

In an end of year message published on the Fifa website on Wednesday, Blatter says that in addition to the upcoming competitions, a key focus next year will be “football leadership”.

Blatter is standing for a fourth four-year term of office on June 1, at Fifa’s congress in Zurich.

In his message he says he will attend the congresses of all six continental football federations, where he looks forward to working together to set “a strategic course for the future so that Fifa can support its members in an even more targeted and needs-based manner”.

Referring to the award of the World Cup events to Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022, he welcomes the cup’s spread to “new geographical regions and cultures… thus furthering football’s development all over the world”.

The controversial decision, announced at the beginning of December, came in the midst of corruption allegations about the voting process.

Blatter brushed aside the allegations, but they have prompted Switzerland to review its regulations on non-profit sporting bodies, which are currently not subject to strict anti-corruption laws.