ZURICH: Sepp Blatter has reiterated his attack on Franz Beckenbauer over the mystery World Cup payment which has convulsed the German football federation writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
Blatter, currently under a worldwide suspension from FIFA’s ethics committee over unconnected allegations of misconduct in office, has described Beckenbauer’s recall of events 15 years ago as “absurd.”
In an interview with German news magazine Der Spiegel, Blatter said there were “no conditions” made by FIFA for a grant to Germany’s World Cup organizers. “To pay money to receive money? No, you don’t have anything like that at FIFA.”
Beckenbauer, who headed Germany’s World Cup organising committee, has said he agreed to make a payment to FIFA in 2002 in return for funding for the 2006 World Cup.
Blatter had issued his original denial in October, saying: ” never demanded money from Beckenbauer, never in my life and not from the German federation either. It’s just not true.”
Former Adidas chief Robert Louis-Dreyfus, who died in 2009, is believed to have loaned a sum equivalent to €6.7m to the original German bid committee for the payment.
The DFB is investigating the repayment of the sum, which was transferred to FIFA in 2005 and declared as a contribution for a FIFA gala event that never took place.
Two former DFB presidents, Wolfgang Niersbach, who resigned on November 9, his predecessor Theo Zwanziger, and former DFB secretary general Horst Schmidt face a tax tax evasion investigation ordered by Frankfurt prosecutors in connection with the 2005 payment.
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