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I want the news behind the news!

(25 Posts)
greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:01:10

AKA Dumb it down a shade, I'm thick!

Okay so this Sepp Blatter guy, who hell he? What's it all about? I was listening to the radio and they were giving minutes on end to this story. He's some guy... who is the head of FIFA .... which is some kind of football-related organisation... and he's been guilty of shenanigans.... and I was watching the news yesterday and they said "News just in," and the banner said "BREAKING NEWS" and he said something about Prince William, and I was all Oh no!!! Helicopter related mishap!!!!" but no, it was something about how Prince William has stuck his royal oar into this Sepp Blatter hoo-ha.

Someone please in words of one syllable, explain to me who is this guy. Why is he important. What is it all about. If he get elected Chief Poo-bah of the Football Race does that mean children will die? Is he something to do with tsunamis and hurricanes? Is he behind the Grimsvotn volcano eruption?

Do you ever think "I want the news behind the news"? Can John Craven come out and explain it all like he did on Newsround for people who missed the first ten episodes of "caring about international football" and forgot to set the video to record them and just can't catch up?

TheCrackFox Wed 01-Jun-11 14:19:02

I completely agree with you - for two nights in a row the BBC's 10pm news had the same news story as its main news item. I couldn't give a toss who runs world football and I suspect 95% of the population would agree.

Moreover, the newsreaders can just sit bloody down whilst reading the news. Who decided that having them standing makes it anyway more informative.

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:22:46

Yes it was on all afternoon on the radio while I was cooking, it was on at teatime and this morning. I just want a sidebar, a hint... this is what it's all about and why you British viewers are meant to care.

scurryfunge Wed 01-Jun-11 14:34:31

I think it is something to do with England not winning the bid to host the World Cup and therefore accusing everyone else of cheating and the whole selection process being unfair....blah, blah, blah.

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:37:13

Oh so this Sepp Blatter gets to decided which country has the World Cup? It's making a little bit more sense now.... but not much.

LisMcA Wed 01-Jun-11 14:37:24

Ok, it's complicated, but I'l go slow!

Sepp Blatter is head of FIFA, the governing body of world football. The organisation has recently been rocked by bribery allegations along the lines of, "If you vote for us to have the world cup in 2022 will give you ££££" and other naughty things. It is alledged that Sepp knew about some of the incidents, that has resulted in several members being suspended, but has been cleared of any wrong doing.

This has all happened in the same week as the election for the new head of FIFA, and just so happens one of the suspended gadgies was Sepps only competition in the vote. Are you following??

Sepp has now been voted in to serve another 4 years as head of an organisation that appears to be as bent as a 9 bob note.

Prince William comes into it as President of the FA (Englands footballing body) calling for the election to be postponed, probably because they don't like ole Sepp very much.

There are also calls from German FA to investigate the world cup in 2022 being given to Qatar, as it appears they may have bought their votes. Suspended guy, Mohamed Bin Hamman, lets call him Mo! is the Qatari FIFA member, so it's all looking a bit dodgy.

IMHO - Sepp probably will not stay at FIFA as there is now word all the major sponsors are htreateneing to pull out, losing FIFA billions.

I think that just about covers it. [saddo emoticon] grin

LisMcA Wed 01-Jun-11 14:41:04

And.......It does have a little to do with England not getting the world cup, but the whistle blower who promted the investigation was the American member reporting the member for the Caribbean or somewhere like that.

Tis all very political

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:43:08

Thankyou lisMcA.

Still hoping to get to the bottom of the matter: what is the significance? When news editors are putting together their programmes why are they saying "ten minutes on the FIFA story"? How does it affect the British person in the street? Is it because tickets to fly to matches in Qatar are most expensive than tickets to matches in London? (If the World Cup was in England)?

To me this is a "fancy that" story that should make top billing in the "sport" section of the evening news and sport, the bit that I always switch off. What does it have in its story to make it "ten minutes of the top of the news programme"?

TheCrackFox Wed 01-Jun-11 14:44:14

I didn't find it complicated, I just found it completely irrelevant.

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:45:44

Me too, but they will keep harping on about it, it's got my interest now.

scurryfunge Wed 01-Jun-11 14:51:16

The story dominates because everyone knows the English should be the best at football ( men run football and men run the news) and they are about to take their ball home because it 'snot fair that traditionally non-footballing countries get to play too (and take the gate money)

Fifichef Wed 01-Jun-11 14:53:04

Sepp will eventually have to go. The 4 main sponsors are now kicking up a stink and they will be the ones to put pressure on FIFA to kick the old man out. He's 75 and this will be his 4th term (each one being 4 years) so why doesn't he stand down. The whole thing stinks - there must be alot in it for him to not want to go !!?? Anyway - how is it possible to have an election with one person standing? - there's no ''electing'' going on there is there??

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:53:26

I like that, scurryfunge. Funny. I laughed out loud.

LisMcA Wed 01-Jun-11 14:56:26

I think its because of the amounts of money involved, and the thought of nations "buying" the right to host the world cup, which is worth millions in revenue to that country.

Russia (not particulalry known for doing things the fair way) won the vote for 2018 (the one England didnt get) and Qatar got 2022. Anyone seen the Qatari national team play? Nope me neither. Thenn after they won it was mentioned that they will either have to move the tournament to the winter or build fully air conditioned stadia because of the heat.

All stinks of corruption if you ask me!

Fifichef Wed 01-Jun-11 15:02:20

Agree - nasty smell, rotten - rotten, putrid pong!!

Sooner we get it out of the news the better - must be over 50% of the population have no interest - that's us lot at least!!

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 15:03:09

Hi LisMcA, I Googled the Qatari team, they haven't qualified for the world cup but have for the Asia cup. Is it British taxpayer's money that goes towards paying the for fully air conditioned stadia? Does FIFA give the money for world cup related building work? If Qatar has to spend money on building a new stadium, for its football tournament, I don't see how that is newsworthy in Britain. I'm just trying to get at why this is significant and newsworthy in Britain.

Are we meant to be gritting our teeth at the unfairness of it all? How does it impact us? Are we meant to feel sorry for our football-loving brethren having to go to exotic foreign countries for the World Cup?

HolyFail Wed 01-Jun-11 15:03:29

Corruption is the word!

Meita Wed 01-Jun-11 15:07:57

The significance?

There is lots of money in football. Seriously. It's like a huge international corporation. It's probably worth more than many nation-states.

So with all that money, FIFA is very influential. There was something about money going to Haiti after the quake and such. Just like if we were talking about NESTLE.

With a corporation like NESTLE, there is some public interest in transparent structures and stuff. Because they are so huge and pervasive and influential, we want them to be accountable, at least to the shareholders, right?

But who are the shareholders - or rather stakeholders - in football? Seeing how popular the sport is, it's very very many people. All these people are making FIFA rich and influential. We don't want to see them abusing their power. Therefore corruption and intransparency is a problem that should be significant to everyone who is interested in football, or just simply lives in a football-loving country.

It's a bit like the MP expenses scandal. Relevant to us because we have a stake in the British society. This FIFA thing is relevant to us because we have a stake in the thing that is football (and even if we aren't personally interested, we are probably giving money indirectly somewhere, such as through buying sky sports add-ons or something)

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 15:13:08

Thankyou Meita.

What is FIFA? How does it get its money? Is it to do with taxpayers money? Or is it more the principal of the thing?

None of my money goes to Sky Sports. No football lovers in my house. If football was corrupt as as nine pound note it makes no nevermind to me.

LisMcA Wed 01-Jun-11 15:15:23

Englands bid for 2018 cost something like £15million, with individual councils putting up about £2million,just for the bid and becuase England wouldn't give back handers to the voting committee they didn;t win/ I think one guy asked for a Knighthood hmm. Taxpayers money paid for a bid for something we had a cats chance in hell of winning because Sepp doesn't like the FA getting too big for its boots.

It also makes a laughing stock of football.

And FIFA are a registered charity, promoting football in developing countries, settign up academies for children who have nowhere else to go. The thought of these men running the charity sid eof things also makes me angry.

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 15:17:10

Thanks LisaMcA.

LisMcA Wed 01-Jun-11 15:17:54

What Meita said smile

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 02-Jun-11 00:41:29

FIFA's massively wealthy and exerts a ridiculous amount of political power. Sponsors including Coca Cola and Emirates Airlines stump up third-world-country-GDP amounts of cash to be involved. Countries desperately want to stage the World Cup because it's like owning a mint... so you end up with Blatter doing handshakes on the doorstep of No.10 and being feted like some visiting head of state. And all the time doing an ASDA-style back pocket pat thanks to his new mate Mr Putin. I think the nearest equivalent is the Olympic Committee - but that seems to be be a lot better managed. Blatter's also the one that won't let touchline cameras or third umpires into the game to solve disputes.

Then again, what with cricket matches being fixed, cyclists being stuffed more full of drugs than a branch of Boots and all the other dodgy crap that goes on in the name of 'sport', I'm not sure any of it is worth watching.

EldritchCleavage Thu 02-Jun-11 11:47:52

Football is hugely important to a lot of poor countries who 'export' players to the rich leagues in developing nations. You can bet anyone who makes it, even in lower leagues, is supporting large numbers of people back home.

Many of the very successful ones invest their wealth at home and become politically influential: George Weah is a force in Liberian politics (and seems to be a fairly respectable chap); when the Toure brothers and Didier Drogba opine on Ivorian politics their whole country listens (I think one was even instrumental in getting a cease-fire in the recent civil conflict at one stage); Marcel Desailly and Patrick Virera both run very good academies/charities which, if nothing else, provide children with a good education in countries were education is no longer free, thanks to the IMF. They have literally got children off the street. Rich multi-nationals who would not otherwise donate fall over themselves to support these initiatives.

Staging a tournament well (e.g. Ghana in African Nations Cup) puts your otherwise little-known or cared about country in the spotlight in a way nothing else does. It isn't fanciful to suggest that it can lead to increased inward investment and tourism. The whole thing now generates billions in revenue, plus kudos and influence. So football really matters.

FIFA is the governing body of ALL world football. And it is a stinking mass of corruption (not just straight financial misconduct but also political corruption and the indulging of prejudice and grudges, in my view). This recent spat is just the latest, not the only scandal.

People stay in post too long. It is up to countries' respective football asssociations to chose their delegates to FIFA, but they are permitted to go on sitting for years. The current executive committee of FIFA features a bunch of men who have been in power there since the 70s.

Old Seppl may have masterminded the explosion of football and the World Cup into a multi-billion pound business, but on his watch the corruption allegations have come thick and fast. He has also come out with outrages like women should perhaps play in hotpants or other skimpy attire to increase interest in women's football.

One word of caution though-Russia is a notoriously corrupt coutry but actually their World Cup bid was genuinely a strong one and there was a really good case for giving them an historic first World Cup. They may well have beaten us fair and square. Not saying they actually did, but it's entirely possible.

Even my 14 year old nephew realises that the Qatar win, on the other hand, was a bag of shite.

AbsDuCroissant Thu 02-Jun-11 14:18:40

I know someone who used to work for the ICC (the cricket version of FIFA), so worked a lot in that area, has a lot of contacts. Apparently FIFA is rotten to the core - incredibly corrupt place. They, and an ex-colleague, both applied to FIFA for jobs and were told that they didn't have a chance in hell, as they weren't the offspring of, or related to in anyway, someone senior and powerful there. Even though they had tons of relevant experience, and the colleague ended up working at the World Cup, through another route.
But yeah, basically corrupt as hell, answerable to no one as there's such large amounts of money involved.

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