Football

Francois Carrard to lead FIFA reform process

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The man credited with cleaning up the International Olympic Committee after the Salt Lake City scandal has been appointed to carry out a similar job at FIFA.

Swiss lawyer Francois Carrard led the reform programme at the IOC in the wake of the cash-for-votes crisis which came to light in the late 1990s and has now been handed the role of chairman of FIFA's reform committee.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter will stand down in February amid two separate corruption inquiries related to the administration of football's world governing body.

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Seven FIFA officials were arrested in a dawn raid at a hotel in Zurich on May 27 after warrants were issued by the US Department of Justice in relation to charges of corruption.

In total, the American authorities have indicted 18 people as part of their investigation. Four of those people have pleaded guilty to corruption charges, including former FIFA executive member Chuck Blazer who has admitted taking a bribe to vote for South Africa to host the 2010 World Cup.

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Swiss authorities are also conducting a separate inquiry into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Blatter, who will relinquish his role when an extraordinary FIFA Congress votes on his successor on February 26 next year, welcomed the appointment of Carrard, who was director general of the IOC from 1989 to 2003.

Each of the six confederations within FIFA have chosen two people to sit on the reform committee. A further two committee members will be appointed by FIFA's commercial partners.

"We believe Dr Carrard is the right person to drive this reform process forward as an independent chairman with a proven track record in governance reforms," Blatter said.

"We are confident that he can help FIFA to strengthen its governance structures in a credible and meaningful way. FIFA's commercial partners will also play a key role in the reforms, and we will be discussing with them the most productive way to include their views."

Carrard added: "It is vital for the future of global football to restore the integrity and reputation of its governing body.

"As the independent chairman, I am committed to delivering the necessary package of credible reforms, working with representatives from within football and wider society. To that end, I will establish an independent advisory board, made up of representatives from outside football, to support the work of the committee and provide an additional layer of independent expertise."

UEFA president Michel Platini, the favourite to succeed Blatter in February after declaring his intention to stand for election, welcomed the release of details over the make-up of the reform group.

"The creation of this task force will be an important step towards introducing much-needed reforms at FIFA," he said.

"All of the confederations have picked their representatives based on their knowledge of football and governance matters, and we will now all work together for the greater good of the game."

The reform committee will put together a series of proposals to be voted on at the extraordinary congress in six months' time.

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World Cup

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