PtG Article 18.03.2011

Bin Hammam announces candidacy for FIFA President

As expected Qatari Muhamed Bin Hamman, President of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) today announced that he is ready to challenge Sepp Blatter at the FIFA Presidential elections in June 2011.

"Today after careful study, consultation and consideration, armed with my love and passion for football, believing that our game is about fair competition, I have decided to contest.” Bin Hammam said according to the Telegraph.

Bin Hammam stressed the need for change in FIFA, and said that he would seek an "absolute ethical, democratic and transparent environment within FIFA”The AFC president hopes to achieve this by setting up a Transparency Committee and broadening the decision-making base by expanding the FIFA Executive Committee from 21 to 41 members. He also promised a double-up on the annual grant for all 208 member federations as well as fair distribution of World Cup revenues.On his opponent current President Sepp Blatter, Bin Hammam said"Mr Blatter is a very experienced person ... he has actually made significant contributions towards development of the game worldwide. The world knows him very well. But I believe also that there is always a time limit for everything. The time now is for new faces, new blood, new air to FIFA.”"I am glad to say that the AFC executive committee encouraged me and supported me in my candidacy and I am inviting member associations, football communities, media to be part of my humble endeavour to make the change that is necessary and needed in FIFA," the Telegraph reported Bin Hammam saying at the press conference held at the AFC headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.According to Al Jazeera Bin Hammam still needs the official nomination from a national federation while Sepp Blatter has been nominated by Somalia.SOURCE: THE TELEGRAPH and ALJAZEERA