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Is Fifa now threatening the media’s future access to the world cup?

by Tony Attwood

If you are a regular reader you will know I’ve been going on and on and on about the fact that the UK papers won’t cover the huge Fifa scandal which could see the removal of Infantino, just as Blatter was removed before him.

But today, out of the blue, the Guardian is reporting that “Fifa has extended the suspension of the Haitian football federation president, Yves Jean-Bart, while it investigates allegations of sexual abuse and has also provisionally banned two other FHF officials including the technical director, Wilner Etienne.”

Now of course that is news, and such matters are incredibly serious, I don’t deny that for a second.  But why report that case, when not reporting the alleged corruption in the case involving the head of Fifa and the chief prosecutor of Switzerland?  Or come to that an Israeli bank being fined nearly $1bn in a money laundering scandal which again involved Fifa?

And particularly when the issue in Haiti is not new news in the sense of being new, for as the Guardian says, “The 72-year-old’s suspension was due to expire on Sunday but Fifa confirmed in a statement on Thursday that it has now been extended for another 90 days after “a request by the chairwoman of the investigatory chamber”.”

“This sanction has been imposed in connection with ongoing investigations into Mr Jean-Bart, as well as other officials within the FHF, who were identified as having allegedly been involved (as principals, accomplices or instigators) in acts of systematic sexual abuse against female football players,” it is a direct quote from the Fifa media machine.  Of course it is serious – but so is corruption in Switzerland.

Thus Infantino’s press office in Fifa is indeed making much of this case, undoubtedly as an attempt to continue to draw attention away from what is happening in Switzerland.  The Guardian report continues, in a direct quote from Fifa’s press machine…

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“Furthermore, preliminary investigation proceedings are currently being carried out that include the analysis of potential offences committed by other FHF/Haitian officials. The decisions taken by the chairpersons of the adjudicatory and investigatory chambers of the Ethics Committee have been duly notified to Mr Jean-Bart, Ms Joseph and Mr Etienne.”

This is why I keep coming back to the Untold article Switzerland take a greater interest in Fifa – at last.   The news was all over Europe that Fifa was no longer safe from prosecution in Switzerland but the UK media ignored that story and so were surprised when the Americans moved in and started arresting people at a Fifa convention.

But, while we are here, what else are they saying in the media?

“Magalhaes delays final decision on Arsenal move as Manchester United make dramatic late bid” is the Telegraph’s take.  We are being told by the media that he is a fantastic player and we need him – hence the Daily Mail headline:

“‘Absolute machine’ Gabriel Magalhaes is perfect for the Premier League… the £22m Arsenal-bound defender can be Arteta’s ball-playing centre-back and get the best out of compatriot David Luiz”

But we are also being told that somehow Arsenal can’t get their act together and so will let someone else jump in and take the player.  Although there is some relief in that Just Arsenal news tells us that  “SkySports report says Arsenal will beat Man United to Magalhaes.”

And, although they won’t mind a toss, because they never do, Manchester City really seem to have lost all the newspaper friends that they spent so long wining and dining before the Uefa fight. As the Guardian says, “PSG’s success exposes City’s failure. They are two teams with similar funding models who have shared similar frustrations, but one of them is now laying those ghosts to rest. It takes time to build a team that can win the Champions League, but Guardiola has had that.    Nobody seems to be asking whether success in Europe is something he is capable of achieving and increasingly the evidence suggests it is not.”

The media against Man City?  That’s a new one.

Oh yes, and there is another knocking story in the Mail, under the banner, “REVEALED: Clubs with newer stadiums such as Tottenham and Manchester City could be allowed BIGGER crowds with Government preparing to welcome back fans in October.”

The Manchester City stadium was built and paid for by the taxpayer in 2002.  The Arsenal Stadium four years later – but paid for by the club.  So why mention Manchester City?  Could there be an inducement from City to the Mail to mention them positively at this moment when their grand scheme of spending billions and seeing off the incompetent Uefa legal machine has come off the rails?

But enough of such scalliwagery.   Let’s conclude with a transfer rumour from the Mail.

“Houssem Aouar wanted by Arsenal with Premier League side already ‘offering cash-plus Matteo Guendouzi deal’ to Lyon for Champions League star… but Champions League semi-finalists are holding out for offer of £54m”

It isn’t a new story – the player has been on our chart of players Arsenal are tipped to sign for a few weeks – but just in case you have missed that list here it is.  All 122 of them.

4 comments to Is Fifa now threatening the media’s future access to the world cup?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Five former Manchester United players may feature in the two Finals , three of whom may get some measure of revenge for Man Utd when Inter Milan play Sevilla .

    Were all 5 players given a fair chance at United ? Do watch the games and listen to the bleatings of former ex-United players turn ‘experts ‘ as the twist and turn the story as it unfolds .

    For the rest of us , Arsenal fans , we will be looking at our former player , Serge Gnabry to see the further improvement he has made back home in Germany.

  • Ben

    Kane has to go to qaurantine after coming back from the Bahamas but the entire Liverpool team are exempt as they train in Austria.

  • Menace

    Covid was seen sunning himself in the Bahamas but didn’t take to skiing in Austria,hence the quarantine.

    He was also found to picking a fight in a Greek Island.

  • I wonder how much of the Magalhães to Manure story was related to the possibility that their main central defender may have been taking a longer holiday than expected.

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