FA silent over Triesman claims

The Football Association is refusing to comment on reported claims from chairman Lord Triesman that Spain were attempting to bribe referees at this summer's World Cup.

Triesman, a Labour peer who was appointed the FA's first independent chairman in January 2008, finds himself at the centre of a media storm which could threaten England's bid to host the 2018 World Cup after he was secretly recorded in conversation with a former civil servant aide.

The 66-year-old was reported in the Mail on Sunday to have said that Spain was ready to abandon its own bid to stage the 2018 World Cup and get behind Russia's effort to host the event should they help them bribe referees in South Africa.

"Spain are looking for help…to bribe the referees," he was quoted as saying just days after travelling with figurehead David Beckham to Zurich to present the FA's bid book to stage the 2018 World Cup to FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

"There's some evidence that the Spanish football authorities are trying to identify the referees…and pay them.

"My assumption is that the Latin Americans, although they've not said so, will vote for Spain.

"And if Spain drop out, because Spain are looking for help from the Russians to help bribe the referees in the World Cup, their votes may then switch to Russia."

Meanwhile, Triesman also waded into the John Terry issue during the potentially damaging taped conversation.

The Chelsea captain was stripped of the England captaincy by head coach Fabio Capello in February following the eruption of a media storm after allegations emerged that he had conducted an affair with a team-mate's former girlfriend.

Triesman claimed Terry did not feel he had done anything wrong over his alleged affair with former England and Chelsea team-mate Wayne Bridge's former partner.

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