Saturday, December 5, 2015

No Americans Running for FIFA President

Should the U.S. lead FIFA?  Should FIFA relocate its headquarters to the U.S.?

Many people would argue that the world's sport should be run by Americans.  After the last six months of indictments on FIFA officials, soccer executives and marketers, there is a natural reaction to think about putting soccer in the hands of Americans.  After all, it is the American judicial system that has finally revealed the corruption to the world.  Loretta Lynch, U.S. Attorney General, is a hero in the eyes of those who were incredulous over the Qatar pick of five years ago for World Cup 2022. 

Ironically, it was a woman who brought down this 'old boys club.'  (And, by the way, no women have been indicted.)

There are seven men running for FIFA President in February with Michael Platini possibly not being allowed due to his suspension.

American ethics and values are on full display during this whole FIFA ordeal.  The U.S. is the one and only country in the world willing to take on the embezzlers.  It is the one and only willing to investigate with time and money to confront the cheaters.  Soccer has been corrupt for decades or possibly since the inception of FIFA.  Now, things will have to change and things will have to be transparent.  Too many soccer executives in FIFA will be too scared of the long arm of U.S. law.  It's just not worth it to be in that kind of a position and scam more kickbacks when the U.S. is going to take your freedom away and throw you in jail.

So, with all the changes that will surely be made, why aren't there any Americans running for FIFA President?  I wouldn't want any from present-day USSF to be involved because I don't trust any of them after Chuck Blazer's exploits and their probable knowledge of other FIFA wrongdoings.

Who would be an outstanding American candidate?  Maybe a former President or present-day humanitarian would do.

There is no doubt that American values should prevail over any other considerations when talking about where FIFA goes from here.  Yet, there are still no American persons being bantered about for leadership positions.  American ideals may be the best recipe for leading FIFA and FIFA must abide by them, but I'm not sure they can be applied to their fullest capabilities without an American in charge.

While we all can agree that American values are needed for FIFA in order that the game of soccer carry forth with integrity, it is also these same values that are tied to how much the U.S. is recognized world-wide as the leader when it comes to accuracy in sports, in general. U.S. sports are consistently tinkering with their sports to perfect them for the purposes of fan enjoyment.

After installing appropriate parameters for executives and how the sport will be managed going forward, those same executives must also concentrate their efforts on making the subtle changes in the rules necessary to improve the spectating experience for fans.

Unfortunately, these Americanizing rules are less likely to come about quickly without an American in charge.  However, I do expect changes in the coming years because the American influence on the game is forever changed because of Loretta Lynch and her office.

FIFA is not going to be telling MLS how to run their league with nearly the same kind of authority as it did pre-indictments.  I believe now that MLS can be more crafty and nuanced with the game without having to think about repercussions or 'rogue' league status.  FIFA no longer dictates to the U.S.  Those days are over.  

1 comment:

  1. The Donald can handle both jobs, don't cha think?