Soccer-Infantino re-elected FIFA president unopposed, promised greater revenues
By Philbert Jerenma
KIGALI (Reuters) – Gianni Infantino was re-elected FIFA president during the 73rd Congress in Kigali on Thursday, promising record revenues in the next four-year cycle of $11 billion as he called for more football to be played around the world. world.
Infantino stood unopposed, making his re-election as head of football’s governing body a formality, even if he was unpopular among member associations for a host of reasons, including lobbying for a failed plan to play the World Cup every two years.
“It’s an incredible honor and privilege, and a huge responsibility,” Infantino said. “I promise to continue serving FIFA and football around the world.
“To those who love me, which I know there are many, and to those who hate me… I love you all.”
Infantino confirmed that FIFA’s revenue hit record highs in the last cycle of 2019-22, but promised to raise this significantly again on the back of expanded men’s and women’s World Cup tournaments and the introduction of 32 global club teams. cup.
“Revenues rose to a record high of $7.5 billion (until 2022) in the period hit by COVID-19. When it arrived, FIFA’s reserves were around $1 billion, today they are around $4 billion,” said Infantino.
“We are promising a new record revenue for the next cycle of $11 billion, and the new Club World Cup is not included in this figure, so it could increase by two billion (more).”
Infantino said FIFA would continue to review the transfer system to “improve transparency” and suggested the organization discuss a salary cap.
“We must improve our bylaws and FIFA’s statutes. We will continue to develop our principles of good governance and look at the transfer system, and possibly hold a discussion to improve the transparency of transfer fees and salaries.
“It may be necessary to introduce a cap, we have to think about how we can do that. We will look at it with all stakeholders and see what we can do.”
Infantino was first elected to the Extraordinary Congress in 2016 after the resignation of his predecessor, Sepp Blatter, and retained his position unopposed three years later.
But this is considered his second term, and therefore he will be available for a third and final term in four years. (Writing by Nick Said; Editing by Nick McPhee)
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