BRUSSELS: The Belgian and Dutch football federations have taken a legal leaf out of England’s book and sought advice on whether to reclaim their 2018 World Cup bid expenditure from FIFA.
Sepp Blatter, the suspended president of the world football federation, said in an interview with Russian agency TASS that FIFA leaders had agreed on the outcome before the vote in December 2010.
Blatter did not make it clear, in his interview, when the agreement had been reached – whether months or merely days before the vote.
In the event Russia won in the second round of the ballot.
Last month Football Association chairman Greg Dyke said that legal advice had been sought on whether England would have a case to sue FIFA for a reclamation of bid costs.
Belgian and Dutch federations confirmed that they are to follow suit on the first step.
Francois de Keersmaecker, president of the Belgian federation, said: “In agreement with our Dutch colleagues we have asked a legal firm to see if we can claim for compensation.
“It was unethical to allow us to incur unnecessary costs while the outcome of the bidding process had already been determined. On the basis of the advice we get, we’ll decide what steps to take next.”
A Dutch KNVB spokesman said: “An interview is not enough to take steps but we are preparing ourselves for the outcome of a continuing investigation.”