Blatter blasts Premier League overseas proposals

February 15th, 2008 - 9:23 pm ICT by admin  

London, Feb 15 (DPA) FIFA president Sepp Blatter warned Friday that the Premier League’s plans to host matches outside of England could affect their chances of hosting the 2018 World Cup. “If you go against the authority of FIFA and the decision-making body which is the executive committee then you cannot expect them to be in your favour later on.

“England will not be the only World Cup bid. I cannot imagine that when you go against the deciding body for the decision on the World Cup in an initiative that will not be accepted by this body, that you will enhance your chances. It will not be diplomatic,” Blattner said.

The Premier League unveiled proposals last week to introduce a 39th round of games, to be played in cities across the globe that had bid for the right to host them.

The move has drawn outrage from fans groups as well as from the Asian Football Confederation and football leaders in Australia and South America.

“To try to have additional exposure and revenue by expanding the league around the world, I think this is not acceptable,” Blatter said.

“It will not be acceptable to the FIFA executive committee, I am sure. This will never happen - at least this will not happen as long as I am the president of FIFA.

“We have not been contacted before by the League to ask us what we think of this idea. You speak about rude, but I think it is an anti- responsibility.

“If you are the most prosperous league in the world and if you accept that everyone in football has a responsibility to maintain it not only as a business, but as a game, then, all of a sudden you come out with a project which only has business and money behind it.

“According to the statutes and regulations, it is said very clearly that if you want to play any match in a foreign territory outside the country where the teams are coming from you need the authorization of that association.

“I will bring it to the attention of the executive committee but you can be sure that the executive committee will reject such an inapplication of the statutes.

“And I will ask the national associations in a decision taken by the executive committee not to accept such an initiative which is definitely an abuse of the game. This is definitely abuse of association football.”

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