ZURICH: Alejandro Burzaco, according to Sepp Blatter, told a New York court a “bunch of fibs” about the scandal-hit vote in December 2010 to award host rights for the 2022 World Cup finals to Qatar writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
Blatter, suspended former president of world football federation FIFA, uses his new autobiography to dismiss evidence given by the former ceo of Argentinian media giant TyC in the trial last year of FIFAGate co-conspirators Jose Maria Marin and Juan Angel Napout**.
Both Marin, former president of the Brazilian CBF, and Napout, ex-head of South American confederation CONMEBOL, face jail after convictions arising out of the multi-million-dollar FIFAGate corruption investigation by the United States Justice Department.
Burzaco, awaiting sentence himself after agreeing a plea bargain, told the court how bribes were sliced out of media deals.
He also claimed that, during executive committee ballots for 2022, South American heavyweights Julio Grondona (Argentina) and Ricardo Teixeira (Brazil) had ganged up during a toilet break to insist that then CONMEBOL president Nicolas Leoz join them in voting for Qatar. Burzaco ascribed the story to Grondona.
That, according to Blatter, was fantasy.
Blatter says: “It was nonsense because the detailed results of each round of voting were never revealed. All that was stated was the name of the eliminated candidate without mentioning the number of votes obtained.
“The election took place behind closed doors under the watchful eye of a German-Swiss lawyer. The participants had to hand over their cellphones on entering the room and any who wanted a toilet break were accompanied by security staff.
“The possibility of negotiating during the vote was virtually nil.”
** Ma Verite by Sepp Blatter (with Pascal Schouwey). Published by Editions Heloise d’Ormesson.