ZURICH: Preparations for a brave new world will be put in train at next week’s meeting of FIFA’s executive committee two days before the extraordinary election congress writes KEIR RADNEDGE.

The exco meets on February 24 tasked with preparing for congress and tidying up the loose ends considering various troubled federations.

These latter decisions – concerning administrative issues in Honduras, Maldives, Thailand, Benin and Guatemala – are of extra significance because of FIFA’s wish to have a full 209-member voting complement in Zurich.

This appears unlikely since another item concerns members ‘not entitled to vote’ which includes Kuwait, home of exco member Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah. Kuwait upset both FIFA and the IOC with a new sports law which was deemed to impose political controls contrary to statutes.

So far there has been no indication that the Kuwaiti government is willing to budge.

Congress will be asked to approve the reform recommendations devised by a commission led by Swiss lawyer Francois Carrard and then vote in a presidential successor to disgraced and banned Sepp Blatter.

The reforms need a 75pc majority to gain approval and the exco is relying on a positive vote since its agenda features an item headed: ‘Potential creation of a temporary advisory board for the reform process.’

The most complex feature of the reform recommendations appears to be the conversion of the exco into a 36-member FIFA Council.

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