FIFA is known as the most important name in the world of soccer. FIFA stands for Fédération International de Football Association. The FIFA world cup is one of the biggest sports events in the world. It is held every four years in a host country. The world cup is a big tournament where countries come together and compete.
The FIFA scandal was a big surprise for many soccer fans. Money was the main issue in the scandal. FIFA was involved in accepting kickbacks, which is illegal payments for unfair deals. The scandal also involved racketeering, which is criminal activity that benefits an organization. Additionally, FIFA accepted $150 million in bribes, potentially including bides from Russia and Qatar. FIFA was involved in money laundering, which is hiding where illegal money came from.
The FBI became involved because money was being moved within US banks. The FBI wanted to know if any illegal deals took place on US soil or used US banks or internet connections. After three years of investigation, the FBI is now sure that the issue does fall under US jurisdiction because payments were carried out via US banks. A total of 14 people were arrested in Switzerland, out of them, nine were high ranking FIFA officials. Switzerland is also conducting their own investigation.
FIFA doesn’t want to confess all the things they are doing wrong. The arrestees will stay in Switzerland while they go through the process of transferring the suspects from one county to another. This could take some time since the accused have the option to appeal. The FIFA scandal probably won’t end there. Investigations are on going and FIFA still plans to hold the world cup in 2018 and 2022 in Russia and Qatar. Qatar plans to spend about $200 billion to prepare for this event.
If one were to look at FIFA’s accounts, nobody would know where the money went. Ninety percent of FIFA revenue is moved through the sale of television, marketing, hospitably and licensing rights for the world cup. Over the past four years, FIFA gained $5.7 billion in revenues. This includes $2.4 billion from the sale of TV rights, and $1.6 billion for marketing rights. This was paid by major world cup sponsors like Coca Cola, Visa, Budweiser and Hyundai. Now the question is what happened to the other $1.7 billion? FIFA claims more than 70 percent of the money goes straight into soccer development. These are expenses to prepare for the next world cup.
Many fans were wondering if FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, was charged. The answer is no; the US did not have enough proof to charged him. The president said he had nothing to do with the missing money. The problem now is if the other FIFA officials confess, there could be enough proof to bring charges against Sepp Blatter.
In order to stop the allegations, Blatter resigned as FIFA president. The next FIFA congress will take place on May 13, 2016 in Mexico City.
[Sources: gokicker.com; PRI.com; theguardian.com]