LONDON: Premier League managers Jose Mourinho and Ronald Koeman have both come out in instant support of the FIFA presidency campaign of Portuguese compatriot Luis Figo writes KEIR RADNEDGE.

Mourinho spoke up for Portugal’s record international, fresh from a success of his own in Chelsea’s defeat of Liverpool in the League Cup semi-finals on Tuesday night.

He said: “Luis Figo’s candidacy is a great step forward for football. His career over many years grants a better future for FIFA.

“I believe in his character and determination, as well as his passion for the game. He will be a president focused on football and its general improvement, acting closely with all federations.”

Southampton boss Koeman, despite the candidacy of Dutch FA chairman Michael Van Praag, also backed Figo, saying: “Figo’s candidacy is an opportunity for the change of FIFA. I know him personally and I know that this is a conscient decision based on the need of giving a new direction to an institution that suffered extensive damage in the past years.”

The presidency vote will take place on May 29 during the world football federation’s congress in Zurich. Incumbent Sepp Blatter is overwhelming favourites to win a fifth term in office. He was elected originally in 1998 after serving as development officer then general secretary and chief executive under Brazilian Joao Havelange.