KEIR RADNEDGE in LONDON: UEFA’s Gianni Infantino has taken an indirect swipe at the confusion which engulfed FIFA over the 2018-2022 World Cup bidding process.

Infantino, UEFA’s general secretary, was addressing the Leaders Business Summit* today.

An underlying rivalry has long existed between the world and European federations which are both headquartered in Switzerland.

FIFA has tumbled from one controversy to another over the World Cup awards which led to a storm over subsequent pressure to move the finals out of the traditional June/July date to winter.

The bid scandal also prompted a series of governance reforms within FIFA which many critics – as well as reform advisers such as Mark Pieth and Michael Hershman – complained did not go far enough.

Infantino, without mentioned FIFA directly, raised a comparison of governance standards in addressing UEFA’s creation of a pan-European Euro finals tournament in 2020.

UEFA, without being prompted, had readily published its assessments of the venue bids and then the voting.

Infantino said: “It’s because this is UEFA and UEFA doesn’t like only to talk about good governance, it likes to do good governance and this means means having the bid regulations established before the bidding not then changing them – and publication of votes and results comes in line with all of this.”

* Leaders Business Summit at Chelsea FC, Stamford Bridge, London

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