Fifa to the Rescue

10 September 2005 at 23:14 | 1348 views

A ’special project’ is being put together by Fifa to improve the quality of African league football. Sepp Blatter, Fifa’s president, acknowledged that African league football has suffered a severe drop in quality as a result of the exodus of players to European Asian leagues.

"One of the projects that we have, as we look forward to the 2010 World Cup, is doing something to improve the viability of African league football," Blatter said on Saturday.

"We have to curb the flight of players to Europe and Asia and see how companies can invest in the game.

"We shall start working on this project by September 2006. It is the special project for Africa in Fifa," Blatter said.

"For [the World Cup in] 2010 we have a special programme in conjunction with international bodies.

"The 2010 World Cup finals will not just be a South African World Cup but an African World Cup," Blatter said.

In a separate development, Blatter gave little regard to the accusation of Ochilo Ayacko, Kenya’s Sports Minister, that the Harambee Stars were bribed to lose their last World Cup qualifier to Tunisia.

Tunisia confirmed their leadership of Group five, ahead of Morocco, after their 2-0 win in Nairobi.

"We haven’t any proof that there has been any corruption." Blatter claimed.

"If you look at the game, Kenya had two chances but Tunisia scored with their first chance and then scored again.

"I know how emotional people are when they lose but football is a school of life and people must learn how to lose [gracefully]," Blatter said.

"The disciplinary committee is looking into that match and will come up with their findings after talking to the people concerned."

Photo: Fifa boss Sepp Blatter