STUTTGART: Former German football federation head Gerhard Mayer-Vorfelder has died, aged 82.

‘MV’, who was also president of Stuttgart between 1975 and 2000 and a leading regional politician, was one of the German game’s most powerful and controversial personalities.

DFB president Wolfgang Niersbach, expressed condolences to Mayer-Vorfelder’s widow and four children, saying: “Gerhard Mayer-Vorfelder was one of the most influential figures I have met in German football. I knew him as both straightforward and resolute who demonstrated great dedication to the sport and always had the needs of players in mind.

“His ideas and his commitment provided our football with the important impulses from which we all benefit today. The recent successes such as winning the World Cup highlight the pioneering choices of the past in which Gerhard Mayer-Vorfelder has played a major role.

Mayer-Vorfelder was president of the German league committee from 1986 to 2000 and, a year later, was elected head of the DFB in Magdeburg as successor to Egidius Braun.

He was succeeded by Theo Zwanziger after presiding over Germany’s outstanding hosting of the 2006 World Cup. A year later he was nominated as DFB honorary president.

Mayer-Vorfelder was also a member of the executive committees of both world federation FIFA and European governing body UEFA. FIFA president Sepp Blatter, via Twitter, said: “Your life’s work will always be remembered.”

As a CDU politician he had spells as Minister of Education and Finance in Baden-Württemberg.

He once compared his high-profile days in football and politics as “like standing almost daily in the trenches with poison arrows whistling around me.”


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