When it seems that the only people who like you are your cronies and delegates at FIFA, the last thing football needed this week was FIFA’s Dictator President and Mr Popularity himself Sepp Blatter do drop another publicity clanger with his comments regarding racism in football.
Asked if he thought there was racism on the pitch, the FIFA president told CNN World Sport:
“I would deny it. There is no racism, there is maybe one of the players towards another, he has a word or a gesture which is not the correct one, but also the one who is affected by that.
‘He should say that this is a game. We are in a game, and at the end of the game, we shake hands, and this can happen, because we have worked so hard against racism and discrimination.
‘I think the whole world is aware of the efforts we are making against racism and discrimination. And on the field of play sometimes you say something that is not very correct, but then at the end of the game, the game is over and you have the next game where you can behave better.”
For Blatter to come out with nonsense such as that shows you just how deluded and out-of-touch the power-hungry Swiss now is. When you are the head of any company, you are meant to set an example to not only your colleagues but everybody looking in on your company. If a low-scale worker behaves badly, what happens? Nine times out of 10 they are sacked and replaced.
It’s only due to Blatter being the all-mighty of FIFA that he hasn’t been kicked out years ago. He is a man who cannot be trusted and is only leading FIFA currently due to default. But for corruption allegations he would have been ousted years ago and if you believe the rumours, one of the reasons why he hasn’t stepped down yet is because he is so power-hungry that he wants to earn a Nobel Peace Prize before calling it a day.
For Blatter to basically tell players who are victims of racial abuse on a football field to basically shake hands with their abuser is practically telling them to ‘deny’ that they were abused in the first place. Let’s get real here for a second, we are not in the 1950’s here, it’s 2011 and times have changed. For a footballer in today’s world to keep quiet and let someone who has racially abused them just get away with it is wrong.
You wouldn’t teach that in schools Mr Blatter. People have to stand up for what they believe in and if they have been a victim of an offence, they should feel confident enough to go to their authorities and report the crime. Blatter of course has since hidden behind his remarks claiming on FIFA’s website that his comments were ‘misunderstood’ and that football’s world governing body have made great strides in kicking racism out of the game.
It’s very well saying that, but there is no way someone as intelligent as Blatter (and let’s not kid ourselves he is an itelligent man, would be where he is today by being a dunce) could use ‘misunderstanding’ a situation has an excuse. He would have known exactly what he was saying and would have understood the question put to him which was: ‘Do you think there is racism on the pitch?’
So now what does Blatter do next. Will he resign? Nope. The only way he will go is if enough of FIFA’s sponsors put enough pressure on him to go. Even that might not be enough, after all if you are a dictator controlling the world, sitting high and pretty on your throne unopposed, would you step down even if you are being told nobody likes you?
If that was the case Blatter would have gone years ago. He’s here to run football until 2015 when his final four-year term as FIFA president ends. Only then will football truly move forward and correct all the wrongs of the last 15-20 years. That year can’t come soon enough.
By Adam Dennehey @ADennehey87