Fifa crisis: Germany "appears" to have used bribes to win right to host 2006 World Cup, says newspaper

 
Joe Hall
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Germany lost in the semi-finals of their home World Cup in 2006 (Source: Getty)

Germany is the latest country to become embroiled in Fifa corruption allegations after a local newspaper announced it had uncovered evidence of potential bribes used to win the right to host the 2006 World Cup.

Der Spiegel says it has information which suggests the German bid committee had set up a slush fund with 10.3 Swiss francs, used to secure the votes of four Asian representatives on Fifa's executive committee.

High-ranking German football officials such as iconic defender Franz Beckenbauer and head of the German Football Federation (DFB) Wolfgang Niersback were aware of the fund "filled secretly" with a loan later recalled by then-Adidas chief executive Robert Louis-Dreyfus in July 2000, alleges the paper.

Read more: Police question Fifa officials on Qatar World Cup voting

Earlier today the DFB said it was investigating whether a €6.7m payment from the 2006 World Cup organising committee to Fifa had been used as intended.

The payment, made in 2005, was undeclared in official accounts but recently discovered through an internal DFB investigation into the bidding process.

According to Der Spiegel, documents show that this payment was in fact used to repay Louis-Dreyfus allegedly under cover of a payment to Fifa.

Fifa's reputation has already been severely tarnished by allegations of corruption in the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, controversially awarded to Russia and Qatar respectively.

The 2010 and 1998 World Cups have also been placed under scrutiny after disgraced former Fifa official Chuck Blazer admitted taking bribes in the bidding process for both tournaments.

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