Aussies back Blatter

Football Federation Australia chief executive Ben Buckley says he has every confidence in newly re-elected FIFA president Sepp Blatter.Buckley told ABC Radio that Blatter had given a strong indication that there would be cultural change at FIFA in the wake of a series of revelations which have seen senior FIFA executives Mohamed bin Hammam and Jack Warner suspended pending a further investigation over bribery claims.

“Well certainly the language coming from the president and the rest of the FIFA executives today was positive in that it would look to reform the decision making process, particularly around the World Cup,” Buckley said.

“And we’ve been on the record before as saying that that process is somewhat flawed and needs to be looked at.”

“There’s a strong willingness for FIFA to look at the governance practices and that’s a good step in the right direction.”

Buckley also confirmed that Australia helped vote down a motion to delay the election, which Blatter won unopposed with the FFA’s support.

Among the changes confirmed by FIFA is a new ruling which will see the entire FIFA membership vote on future World Cup hosts rather than the FIFA executive committee.

Australia was one of four countries which lost out to Qatar for the right to host the 2022 World Cup, a decision which has also been put under scrutiny in light of the corruption allegations.

Australia’s federal Sports Minister Mark Arbib has vowed to maintain his vigilance of FIFA to ensure Blatter’s message of reform is carried out.

“He has said that he will take on reform in the organisation and he now must do that. President Blatter has a great deal of work to do. He and his organisation have to get on with it,” Arbib told the ABC.

“Reform is necessary. What FIFA requires is action that took place in the IOC after Salt Lake City when the IOC cleaned up its game and that is exactly what FIFA now requires and of course the voting members of FIFA need to ensure that president Blatter is held to his word.”

“He has said he’ll reform the organisation, it’s time for that to take place.”