Article continues below
An overwhelming majority of football supporters surveyed in a new poll have no confidence in FIFA or in any of the five candidates standing to be the world governing body's new president following a year of scandal.
Sixty-nine per cent of the 25,000 supporters who took part in a survey conducted by Transparency International and the Forza Football app said they had no confidence in the current governing body. When asked which of the candidates aiming to be elected as FIFA's new president on Friday was the best man to run FIFA, 60 per cent answered 'none of the above'.
FIFA's ad-hoc electoral committee declared Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, Gianni Infantino, Prince Ali bin Al Hussein, Jerome Champagne and Tokyo Sexwale as eligible candidates for the election back in November following integrity checks conducted by the investigatory chamber of FIFA's ethics committee.
The survey, which included football fans from 28 different countries across the globe, also found that 43 per cent said their enjoyment of football had been affected by the corruption scandals which have beset FIFA in recent months.
The US Department of Justice is conducting a wide-ranging investigation into allegations that past and present FIFA officials were involved in racketeering, wire fraud and money-laundering conspiracies, while the Swiss authorities are investigating the awarding of the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 finals to Qatar.
Sepp Blatter resigned as president just days after his re-election last summer amid the corruption scandals and has since been banned from all football-related activity for eight years over a "disloyal payment" he signed off to Michel Platini in 2011.
Platini received the same sanction as Blatter in December, with both men awaiting the outcomes of their appeals to FIFA against the punishments.
Prior to the vote to elect a new president on Friday, the member associations at the extraordinary FIFA Congress on Friday will be asked to vote on a package of reforms which include term limits for the FIFA president and for members of the FIFA Council, which it is proposed would replace the current executive committee.
The reforms also make provision for all candidates for membership of the Council to be subject to eligibility checks, and that at least one of each confederation's seats on the Council to be reserved for a woman.
Deborah Unger, the manager of the Corruption In Sport initiative for Transparency International, told Press Association Sport: "If the Congress doesn't vote for these reforms then all bets are off.
"The reform proposals are almost a skeleton framework but there is a lot unsaid."
Asked why none of the candidates appeared to have popular support among football supporters, Unger added: "It's a sorry reflection of the candidates that fans don't feel they can trust them. The previous scandals have a lot do with that, and it didn't help that FIFA has not published the results of its integrity checks."
Unger believes it is vital that an independent oversight committee is established if FIFA is to regain people's trust.
"Sport has been allowed to bumble along without much oversight or scrutiny, and when you are talking about organisations dealing with in some cases billions of pounds that is essential," she said.