RIO DE JANEIRO: Finally the South American football confederation has kicked Brazil’s Marco Polo Del Nero off the executive committee of world federation FIFA.
A CONMEBOL statememt, issued after a meeting in Rio de Janeiro, said: “Mr Marco Polo Del Nero asked to leave the FIFA Executive Committee as Conmebol’s representative and he recommended Mr Fernando Sarney as his replacement and that was unanimously approved.”
Sarney is the son of a former Brazilian president and one of the CBF’s four vice-presidents.
Del Nero replaced Jose Maria Marin as head of the CBF in April and will continue in that role.
He has not attended any FIFA executive committee meetings since May when he fled Switzerland after police raided a Zurich hotel and arrested nine football officials and five sports media and promotions executives in the United States FIFAGate corruption and bribery investigation. Marin was one of those detained.
Del Nero has not left Brazil since then for fear of arrest since Brazilian citizens cannot be extradited.
He has not yet been named formally as under investigation but has been criticised for staying home at a time when FIFA is undergoing the greatest crisis in its 111 years.
He has missed a string of FIFA exco and Olympic committee meetings, did not accompany Brazil to the Copa America in Chile and has not travelled to World Cup qualifiers in Santiago and Buenos Aires.
Senior figures inside and outside the game in Brazil have called on Del Nero to resign not just from FIFA’s Executive Committee but also from the CBF.
The turmoil inside the CBF is affecting all areas of the game, former Real Madrid, Barcelona and Inter Milan striker Ronaldo told Reuters on Wednesday.
“Results don’t come in a tumultuous atmosphere,” Ronaldo said, pointing out Brazil’s elimination at the quarter-final stage of the Copa America and their inconsistent start to the 2018 World Cup qualifiers. “I think he (Del Nero) should leave.”
Marin was extradited from Switzerland to the United States earlier this month.
Del Nero has said he will continue as CBF president as well as on CONMEBOL’s executive committee. A CBF statement claimed he had resigned from his role at FIFA to “give my full attention to Brazilian football debates and themes.”