SYDNEY: Australia – as well as England – should be refunded its 2018-2022 World Cup bid cost by FIFA, according to the Aussies’ former head of communications.
England’s Foptball Association indicated on Wednesday that it would seek legal advice after a claim by FIFA president Sepp Blatter that the awards had been settled before the vote.
Australia spent more than £20.9m of public money on its bid including a 270,000 payment to former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner.
Bonita Mersiades, who worked on the Australian bid, said in an interview with BBC Radio: “Regardless of how it was spent, when it was taxpayers’ money and when the process was as broken and as fixed as Sepp Blatter says, then the money should be recovered on behalf of the taxpayers.”
Mersiades, who co-founded of the campaign group #NewFifaNow, said “highly paid consultants” told the Australia 2022 team that parts of the bidding process, including the technical inspection and final presentation, “didn’t count” towards the final vote.
She said: “You ask yourself why we paid all this money for those things.”